Monday, June 22, 2009

A fine coating of moss

That's how this weather is making me feel - like I'm developing a fine coating of moss, or possibly mold. Me, the furniture, the cat, the car... everything. Mossy. Crap, if I'd wanted to live in Seattle or Ireland, I'd have moved there! ;-) We're looking forward to a break over the weekend, but I'm starting to lose confidence. The other day I actually caught myself thinking how sad it was that I hadn't gotten those plants in, and here it is the end of the season already. Ummm... no. That's a September thought. It's really only June. *sigh*

So between the weather and being sick as a dog last night, I gave myself permission to stay home today and drink tea and knit. This gave me the chance I needed to make some measurable progress on a couple of projects I've had waiting in the wings.

And yes, I did finish the back of The Big Red Sweater before starting anything new. So there.

First is Kyle's Boyfriend Sock in Dream in Color Smooshy, Chinatown Apple.

Not only is the pattern quick and fun to knit, but the yarn is amazing. I can't say enough good things about Dream in Color. Not just the texture and the twist and the softness, but the colors are absolutely amazing. The photo doesn't do this color justice - it's actually lots of shades of brick red. I think I'm going to use my own skein in Wisterious for the new Outside In sock from the summer issue of Knitty. As far as the purl bumps on the inside sole of socks, I'm just the Princess and the Pea this was designed for. heh.

Another thing I've been wanting to get started in the Ten Stitch Twist blanket (Rav link). I am finally tired of Noro, after my long affair with Lizard Ridge, and I wanted a lighter blanket anyhow; something more suited for spring/summer/fall use. After Blogless Sara and I had our amazing yarn crawl, I had the first two skeins of the yarn I wanted - The Serendipitous Ewe Lucky Sock in Prickly Cactus. Wanting a lighter blanket, I knew sock yarn was the most likely candidate, but I didn't expect to fall in love with a yarn that would lead me to size US1 needles. Yes, you read that correctly - I've started a blanket (not a baby blanket, mind you) using US1 needles. Certifiably insane? Oh yeah. You bet. But look! Isn't it pretty?

The knitting is just a simple garter stitch, but the construction is a magic trick. It tickles me that I can knit a round flat thing in a big spiral like this. It's... engaging. And the colors are just the tropical, floridian look I wanted. I'm very happy with it. Which is a good thing, because I'm a little worried that I'll be knitting this for the rest of my life.

Friday, June 5, 2009

The first time is never easy.

So we didn't get the house.

There was just too much work needed for the price they wanted, and when we counter offered with a list of projects and a reduced price, they basically told us to go take a hike. They didn't even bother countering.


It would have been a good house for us, but I know there's even better stuff out there for the money. We're taking a little break this weekend and we'll start again fresh next week with a strategy meeting with Brian, our realtor. And it gave me a good excuse to buy myself some consolation yarn. A bag of Linen Twist in Chili Red. Mmmmm! heh heh.

Mister Tim was mostly sad that he couldn't get me a house for my birthday. How sweet is that? So instead he's taking me away for a spa day in Portland, Maine tomorrow. Oh yeah - that'll work! ;-) We'll leave right after the Reader's Theatre Collaborative stage reading he's directing on Saturday morning. If you've got nothing else going on at 10am on Saturday, I'd encourage you to go. The plays are a bit blue so don't bring the kids to this one, but you will laugh until you cry. The scripts are fantastic! And yes, I did get roped into reading stage directions. Again. lol!

One last bit of drama to impart - while we were having lunch downtown Wednesday, waiting to hear back about the house, Mister Tim's cell phone rang. I'm thinking it's our realtor with news, but about 30 seconds into the conversation, I know it's not that. It's Tim's main job in Vermont...

They laid him off.

Now, this is no where's near as bad as it sounds. He hated it, he was planning on quitting right after we'd finalized on the house, and he'd already been offered a better job with one of his contracts. But still. The timing was pretty... disconcerting, to say the least!

So that's all I have to report on The Great House Hunt for now. In knitting news I've finished a scarf that desperately needs blocking to be presentable, I'm trying really really hard to stay focused enough to finish the back of The Big Red Sweater before it's too hot to have it on my lap, and Kyle's "sock kit" is staring at me accusingly from my knitting bag.

Next week will be much cheerier. I promise!


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Home...sweet... home??

Saturday was the inspection and I cannot thank our inspector, Ernie, enough for being so thorough (damn him). No really, I'd much rather know now and be able to negotiate for a lower price than get into the house and then realize there's $30k of work to be done. We do not have that kind of cash in the bank.

We spent two sleepless nights thinking about it, then last night sat down and wrote out all the things that were surprises versus upgrades that just come with buying an old house. It still added up to far more than it should be, plus there's that scary, full-length-of-the-house crack running down one side of the foundation wall. Yeah. Good times.

We rewrote the offer last night and our realtor sent it out this morning. I think we managed to be clear that, although there is more upgrading needed than we anticipated, the items we are talking about are all repairs (that central air they promised? yeah. defunct. And then there's the sill...). And we won't even know about the results of the Radon test until Thursday some time. So we reoffered with a substantially lower price, but we think it's a fair price considering all the things that need to be done (illegal plumbing, anyone?). They're bound to have an immediate reaction to the reoffer, for good or bad, so I don't expect this to go on longer than this evening.

So if you see me sobbing into my knitting at Knit Night tonight, I know you'll understand.