Saturday, May 18, 2002

Dinner last night with my neighbors Chris and Adrienne was yummy! We went to Roetelle A.G. - a cute little Swiss restaurant not too far from home. Stuffed ourselves silly on fondue - cheese followed by chocolate. Plus 2 bottles of wine and a shot of kirsch to top off the meal. On the way home, Ryan was all rowdy and trying to get us to go out salsa dancing or to a strip club. Chris was in for it, and Adrienne was like "no way, we are SO going home" so I got to be quiet about it and look as though I was up for it but Adrienne wasn't. Kind of a "good cop, bad cop" routine. Of course, the hilarious part to me was that about 10 minutes after we got home, I went to brush my teeth, and found Ryan asleep. Uh-huh. Very rowdy.

This morning is is 46 friggin degrees and raining. Lovely. Plans are to go the MoMA later, as this is the last weekend before they move it to Long Island City until 2005. I hope the rain lets up, because I'm getting the feeling the place will already be crowded, and rain makes the museums even more attractive to most people.

Tomorrow we're going to my favorite street fair - the Ninth Avenue International Food Festival. I'm very excited because we/I have been away during the festival for the past three years, and I have really missed it! Sunday is also the 3-year anniversary of our first date, and the final episode of The X-Files, so it's looking to be an action-packed weekend!

Hmm, given all that, I think I'll take advantage of the boy's comatose state and get some knitting done. I am just about up to shaping the sleeve cap on Mom's sweater.

Friday, May 17, 2002

Well lookeee here - it worked! :-D
Help! My blog has vanished! Maybe publishing a new entry will make it reappear. [Crossing fingers...]
Shoe news: I am sad to report that though the new red shoes were extremely comfy all day in the office, they did not perform so well during my 20 minute hoof-it-across-town to the Port Authority Bus Terminal yesterday afternoon. We are talking serious blisters on both pinkie toes, the vamp cutting into the top of my foot, and a painful indentation on the bottom of my foot from the lining on the sole near the instep. I was in pain with every step the rest of the night.

I'm not sure if this is a problem inherent in the shoes, or inherent in wearing brand-new shoes for a fast walk all the way across town (just under a mile and a half, according to I am very disturbed, though. These are supposed to be comfort shoes, so they shouldn't require a big break-in period. Not sure what I will do. Perhaps give them another chance. I think my feet swelled and that was part of the problem, but if they're not going to be comfortable for real walking, they're not going to be shoes for this city girl! I will keep you all posted.
Lots of fun last night seeing Star Wars with Jill and Rob. I think we all enjoyed it except Ryan, who was very critical. Not unusual. I think he may have hated it. I actually wouldn't let him go to deep into it last night because I didn't want him to point out all the bad things and ruin the movie for me. Selfish, perhaps, but that's how I felt. It's friggin' Star Wars and I'm going to enjoy it no matter what!

Man, is Natalie Portman gorgeous. I'm a straight woman and even I can't keep my eyes off of her.

I have never done the Friday Five before, but this week's is just too-too appropriate. I have been struggling with hair issues, as I'm well into the awkward stage of the growing-out period. This is made more apparent by the curliness of my hair. When it was short short short it was straight straight straight, but those days are over. Now it's just moderately short and unpredictably curly. It's been over 2 months since my last cut, and I sort of want to get it shaped up a bit, but I am having that "don't want to lose any hard-earned hair length" thing. So, here's the five:

1. What shampoo do you use?

Right now it's some banana stuff with a French name I got on sale at Sephora. Tres yummy, though that isn't the name.

2. Do you use conditioner? What kind?

Always! Lately it's that Thermasilk stuff, because I'm growing out my hair and during the winter found myself with a need to blow-dry it for the first time in nearly 7 years!

3. When was the last time you got your hair cut?

March 1st. This is the longest I have gone without a haircut in 7 years. And it is still just a couple of inches long. This is going to take forever!

4. What styling products do you use?

Everything, these days. Used to use molding cream when it was really short. Then during the slightly longer stage it was mousse + molding cream on the ends. Now in just the past 2 days I've decided to stop blow-drying and let it curl again, so I'm relying on Kiehl's Creme with Silk Groom - the most amazing conditioner/styler ever, even if I have a major problem with buying Kiehl's stuff these days. (Stemming from getting jerked around for months by their corporate office regarding a job they said they wanted to hire me for, and having zero to do with their products!)

5. What's your worst hair-related experience?

The 80s.

Thursday, May 16, 2002

My very first thought upon learning this morning that I need to go to an alcoholism drug symposium in Philadelphia next week: "Ooh, that means I can knit in comfort on Amtrak!"

Yes, boys and girls, we have an addict here. Attending a symposium on treating other kinds of addics. Luckily, no one gets hurt by my addiction (OK, occasionally me if I leave my needles on the sofa) and several people actually benefit.

Got back to the sleeve in earnest last night, and am nearly to shaping the sleeve cap. It always irks me how big sleeves seem to be when you're knitting them. And this is even 8 stitches smaller than the original (huge Rowan sleeve) instructions. It just feels like they take forever! Maybe next time I will start with the sleeves!

Very excited over several things. First, we are going to see Episode II tonight! In 1999, when Episode I came out, I wasn't working full-time, so when my cousin Jill called me in the mid-afternoon and said she and her husband had just scored three tickets for that night, I was able to hop on a bus to New Jersey (40 minutes) and go with them. Since then, we decided it was a nice tradition, so we got four tickets for tonight at 7, same theater. My boss is fine with me leaving at 4 - he's a big movie fan himself, though not a Star Wars fan.

I'm also excited about my new shoes!

I've never bought this brand (Born) before, but I highly recommend them. It's like having little pillows strapped to my feet. I got them in red, and have already gotten lots of oohs and aahs from the other ladies in the office.

Also, it's a sunny, warm day and I'm fairly happy with the work I've done this past week, so I am basically feeling pretty darn pleased with the world. Let's hope it continues!

Wednesday, May 15, 2002

Hmm, I just wrote Deb a long note explaining what the Parson's thing was like - should've saved it and pasted it in here! Anyway, what I said was it was very interesting and informative, and I think I've made my mind up.

They really seem to push their certificate program, which is something like 10 courses (6 required, 4 electives) which take an average of 2 years if you can do 2 classes per week including summers. Now, the certificate isn't recognized by any official organization - it's really just a piece of paper to make you feel good and to show that you took all these classes. It's not going to get you a job or clients.

Also, I can't imagine spending the next 2 years taking night classes in floral design. I mean, I know people who spend that much time taking night classes for their MASTERS or other higher degree. Plus it involves spending around $6K, which seems an awfully large investment. It's not like I am an empty vessel needing to be filled up with knowledge - I have my own ideas and a general level of creativity, but I need to know the how-to's and get a bit more inspired + comfortable with the medium.

So, I think I am going to take Fresh Floral Design I in the summer, and then maybe part II in the Fall, and maybe a Weddings and/or Event design class. I am betting that the work I do in those classes, and whatever I do on my own, will help me get a foothold that I can use to maybe get a couple of jobs on the side, while keeping my day job for the foreseeable future. My best friend is a pastry chef who does wedding cakes, so I can see some synergy developing there. Wedding flowers are so damn expensive, and if I can do a nice job and save people some cash, there's a start and a good way to build a portfolio.

So, that's the plan for now. No major leaps. Even the Parsons people say "don't quit your day job" even if you're doing the certificate. So, I think I've got a bit of a plan. The worst that happens is I decide not to do it for pay and I just have a new skill that makes my house more purdy.

No knitting after the info session. We had Korean Barbecue for dinner, then came home and did my laundry. Whoo-hoo! Livin' the high life here!

3 more rows done on the sleeve during my morning bus ride. I better get some concentrated time in and finish this sucker up soon.

Tuesday, May 14, 2002

I must say, Bliss was the nicest pedicure I've ever had. The nail room there is lovely - the walls are painted with tropical blue-green waters fading off into a horizon with a gorgeous blue sky, so as you sit with your feet in the water, you can gaze off into the ocean. And the woman who did my pedicure, Olga, was awfully sweet. She twisted my arm into accepting a plate of snacks (focaccia, olives, cheese, almonds and cucumbers) and a glass of crisp and fruity white wine. I felt tres pampered! Which was extra nice on a really crappy-weather day.

I knit about another 2 inches of sock during my pedicure/drying time, which made me feel extra-productive. Plus all the ladies thought it was so novel that someone was knitting. Though I would imagine Bliss attracts the HYUK crowd, I could be mistaken! Anyway, I have another appointment there in a little over a month (pre-vacation) and I am looking forward to it already!

So the sock is progressing as discussed above. The sleeve got a few more rows on the bus this morning. The baby blocks are sitting waiting for me to have the energy for them again. I may have to whip up something else for Tracy's baby, since these are far more time-consuming than I had expected.

Not going to make it to Stitch-n-Bitch tonight, sadly. I have been considering a (not right-now, but in the next few years) career change, and tonight there is an open house to learn more about the program I'm considering. What I believe I want to do is get into floral design, and Parsons actually has a certificate program, so I want to check it out and possibly take the first class this summer to see if I really enjoy it as much as I think I will.

This move would be a huge change and a ridiculous pay cut (we're talking maybe 1/3 of my current salary to start) so it's not happening anytime too soon, but I'm thinking maybe I could ease my way in with doing stuff on weekends, perhaps for people who are short on budget but want pretty flowers for parties, weddings, etc. Anyway, the boy is going to come with me to the open house, which is awfully nice and supportive of him. And it's at 6 tonight, so no stitching or bitching for me.

Monday, May 13, 2002

I'm just full of questions today. This one prompted by lunch: why are deli sandwiches so big?! I just got turkey and cheddar on a roll, and there were just about 2 inches of turkey piled on this thing. I took out more than half the turkey on each half, and I have more than enough to make another sandwich or two out of it. And we wonder why so many Americans are so overweight - someone has actually come to think of this as a normal sandwich. This has no relation to the sandwiches I make at home. One of these afternoons I will bring my camera and take some before and after photos of my deli sandwiches. Won't that make for some exciting viewing?
OK, here's a little poll. On the way home from seeing Spider-Man (which, to my amazement, I loved) on Friday night, we were talking about how expensive it is to see a movie in NYC. Not an unusual topic, since we really enjoy movies. But it got me thinking - I know movies here are pricier than anywhere else I know, but how much are movies around the country? I seem to recall paying 5 or 6 bucks in Kentucky 2 summers ago. So who better to ask than my geographically-diverse knitblog buddies (and anyone else who happens to read my blog)?

I'll start - here in NYC, most theaters charge $10.00 per adult ticket. And since it's a busy, crowded city and we usually like to see movies on weekend nights, we generally buy advance tickets via moviefone so we don't get shut out of what we want to see. That adds another dollar to each ticket, so it's really $11.00 each to see a flick. What is it where you live? And are you generally able to see what you want by just showing up and buying tickets, or do you do the moviefone thang? Inquiring minds want to know!
Busy, busy as a little bee over here. Mother's Day was nice. First, Ryan and I went down to the lower east side and got the best NYC brunch stuff - bialys from Kossars, lox and cream cheese from Russ & Daughters, and added that to the organic salad I had picked up the day before at the Union Square Greenmarket. Then Mom and Dad came in and we chowed down at my place before heading up to see the 3-D Imax movie, Space Station. Mom is very interested (and knowledgeable about) aerospace stuff, so this was the perfect plan for her. Dad, too, even though it wasn't "his" day. What an amazing movie - the footage from the International Space Station was fascinating, and the 3-D (gotta love those crazy headset/glasses!) really brought the feeling that this is as close as I'm ever going to get to being in space. If you have the opportunity to see this, do it! It puts a really human face on the whole subject and left us all feeling inspired.

I don't think I knit a stitch all weekend, between cleaning and shopping and entertaining Mom. And this morning I couldn't find the sweater sleeve I have been working on! Of course Ryan found it after I had left. But I did bring my sock with me, even though I find it much harder to do that kind of work on the bus. I am getting a pedicure at Bliss tonight, so I figure while my toesies dry I can get some rounds in on that. Since it's rather chilly to wear flip-flops right now, I expect I'll take an extra-long time drying tonight and have more knitting time. Yay!