Sunday, December 24, 2006

wishes you and yours the same thing, too


May you reflect on the peace, joy and comfort of the gift of the Christ Child as you enjoy your holiday celebration.

Friday, December 22, 2006

and this song of mine in three-quarter time


Time does strange things to one's memory. Always a witty individual, Mark Twain said, "The faintest ink is stronger than the best memory." How true that is in my life today.

For a variety of reasons, many Things from my Past have been resurfacing (or dredged up, depending on how you look at it), and over the past several weeks I have spent much of my time at home thinking about, praying about, writing about, and effectively "dealing with" these Things. This morning I was bumbling about the apartment, not terribly motivated to get up and going, since I only have three small things to do at work and then I'm headed back to pack for Christmas in Michigan and get some last-minute shopping done. As I was putting gel in my hair, I had the inspiration to find a particular CD to listen to while I ate my raisin bran, and thus began a fruitless search. I really wonder where that CD is...but in the meantime I ran across an old journal, which I had been thinking about finding because I know a particular entry exists in the journal about one of the Things, and I wondered what the date was.

Abandoning my search -- oh wait, I just realized that the CD is here in my desk at work...aah... -- abondoning my search for the CD (which now, in retrospect, was a very good idea!), I instead picked up the journal and perused that during breakfast. I was astounded at what I found. (And I was astounded by how faint some of the ink was!)

As I look back and reflect on the Things from my Past, I have a certain sense of how I was feeling when I made particular choices and participated in various activities. But when I looked back in my journal to see what I was actually thinking (or at least was recording as what I was thinking)...I discover that the sense I have is wholly false. The way I think I not how I was! I was surprised to discover common themes of questioning, searching, remorse, and a deep longing in my heart -- the most surprising of all was that these themes are nearly identical to ones I could find in my journal today!

That is not at all what I had expected to find, and it drastically changes my view of myself way back when. How is it that I have come to forget who I was? Have I been making excuses for or trying to explain away my "old" self for all these years? Has it been too hard for me to admit I really was who I was? And why oh why didn't I go back and read those journal entries sooner? Sure, they were from 7 to 10 years ago, but I actually had quite a few wise things to say back then -- I could really have benefitted from my own experience and advice!

But, perhaps one cannot fully appreciate the wisdom of one's own thoughts and ideas until she has marched on, experienced more, and can now bring the wisdom into the new contexts of her life.

All that said, I encourage everyone to keep a journal. You might hate writing, you might think journaling is stupid, but I for one think that it not only has immediate benefits (one entry I read said something like "Writing has benefits over talking to someone because you can sit and organize your thoughts and not worry about saying them the right way or having someone else ask you probing questions about what you're trying to say - you can just get them out!"), like clearing your head, but also serves as a remarkable resource for you when your memory fails. That happens when you get older. Believe you me - it happens even if "old" is only 26!!!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

may your new year dreams come true

As 2006 draws to a close, I look back over what all has occurred this year. Wow. A lot. My thesis project went from hopeless to hopeful...some of my friends went from bad to worse, others from good to great...I moved...I got 2 pets...I've met lots of new people...I've knitted various items...I went to Europe... It feels like the year has flown by so quickly, but when I think about all I've done, it seems really long.

But the biggest question...did I live up to any of my New Year's resolutions? Um...not really. I was fairly successful in many of the areas, but certainly not perfect. ...I really should have revisited that post a few times throughout the year - I had completely forgotten that I had made some of those goals!

So...well, I don't feel too guilty. The items I would normally have the hardest time feeling okay about not having achieved would be those related to my spiritual growth (e.g. reading Bible, setting aside time for God); however, I have learned a tremendous amount of stuff about God and how He relates to me and how I relate to Him and what being a part of the church means and how I am to respond to others based on how God feels about me and others... There are many ways I have grown spiritually that I never, ever would have imagined at the beginning of this year!

Well, what are this coming year's New Year dreams? I'm going to keep it short and simple: 1) graduate 2) love God and love others. (Although, based on my inability to achieve goals...perhaps I should make more goals just so at least I'll complete something! It would be pretty lousy if I both didn't graduate and didn't love God and others...) There are other dreams, too, but those are just dreams, not goals really, so they aren't worth sharing (and, based on my recent State of Brain*, I don't think they're really good for me to even be spending much time thinking about).

I will note, however, that I want to put some concentrated effort into these people:This is my small group Bible study - with a few people missing and with an additional creature (dog) and a leg** - with whom I meet every Wednesday. They're super. They're one of the groups I'm no longer leading. And there is much change in the air! We're a big group, and I've discovered that it takes a lot of time and effort to build and then maintain strong relationships with them all - and I'm pretty poor at doing that. So it's going to be a challenge, but one I'm excited to take to know them better so that when I move (hopefully by the end of 2007!) into the next phase of my life, I will have left an impact on theirs.

And I suppose that's what life is all about - making sure you have something of you left after you're gone.


*It seems that something, or Someone (more likely - the current hypothesis is "D") is sucking my brain cells out... Truly. I forgot to send in my rent check this month - and I have never, EVER forgotten to pay any bill ever! I just completely forgot. Then, Tuesday, I got home from work, curled up to do some reading and writing, and made sure I was ready to leave for hockey practice at 8. Except that when I got in the car at 8, I realized that...practice starts at 8. I was supposed to have left at 7...uh...yeah. Why was I thinking 8? I do not know. I thought that was the end, but the next morning I made up vaccines to give to my mice for my current immunization experiment. After doing careful calculations, I figured out how many doses I needed and found that I had JUST enough of all of my materials to make that many. I made them. Then I realized...I actually needed 10 less than I had made. Not a big, bad deal, but...what was I thinking? And finally, this morning, I got in the car, set off to work, and realized that I was driving in the opposite direction of work and was driving to the highway instead of the busway. Oh me. I conclude that all the brain cells normally devoted to useful and beneficial thoughts about items such as these have been diverted to the far corner of my brain that thinks girly thoughts about guys. Thus, "D" is the culprit.

**The leg. Yes. Like the one in A Christmas Story (see the Clip 1 on the "Sneak Peak" portion of the site if you've never had the pleasure of viewing the leg lamp). Except this one wasn't a lamp, it was just a leg. It was the unofficial winner of "Best/Worst Present" in this year's White Elephant gift exchange. It is actually a Victoria's Secret leg, retrieved from the dumpster behind one of their stores around here. Why? I'm not sure. But...lucky Scott got it! Scott was one of the first to leave the festivities after the gift exchange, and when the doorbell rang not too long after his departure, we knew what we'd find on the front porch: the leg. War has begun...he shall certainly be re-receiving the leg...

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

every song you hear seems to say, "merry christmas"

There are some songs that should not be sung operatically. I don't normally say that, because I rather enjoy opera, and I think the singers are amazing. Did you know that (real) opera singers don't use microphones! That's some major lung power there - I can always hear them fine, and I sit in the very back of the auditorium where the seats are cheap!

But - there are some songs that should not be sung that way. I realized this last night as I was driving out to the store (Goodwill) to find some white elephant gifts for tonight's annual Bible study group gift exchange. On the radio (classical station) was some great woman singing a Christmas carol that I can't for the life of me recall right now (it was so horrible, I had to just delete it from my memory!) - and, oh my!, was it wrong. Gone was the tenderness, gone was the sincerity. It sounded like the woman was trying to embellish and force out difficult notes for all she was worth, was very bad.

It has occurred to me recently that I am totally out of touch with music. I enjoy music. I listen to music - it's just that the only music I listen to is classical music. Most of the composers are dead. There are few radio stations that play the music. It's just plain old not popular! I thus can't tell you much about the music most people listen to. I attempted to keep up a little bit for the four years when I worked with high schoolers, but even then I fell far from actually knowing much about what was hitting the airwaves. Today I know even less! I at least know that Justin Timberlake released a long-awaited album, but that was months ago. That's about it.

Perhaps it's time I familiarize myself with this culturally relevant topic. Not "culture" the way I usually think of it, but popular culture. ...But as I consider that, I realize that it's a gigantic monster of a beast. There is so much to know, so many styles, so much to wade through to get to the point, so much to remember... ...Ugh...what a monstrous undertaking this seems! ...Perhaps it's not time...

For now, the good ol' Christmas tunes (NOT sung by opera stars!) will do.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

it's that time of year - when the world falls in love

It's knitting day.

I knit a few rows of the Retro Rib sock this week. That's it. Why??? I do not really know. I suppose it was a busy week with Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday nights full of activities and Friday night full of shopping and Saturday full of cleaning and hockey games. But I really think that the major reason continues to be that I still haven't unearthed the I-modified-them instructions created during the construction of the first sock of this pair, and I am just plain old too lazy to sit and think about what I changed in the pattern. And I've been reading some pretty good books on the bus. Nevertheless, here is the sock in its current state...
While shopping for Christmas presents last week, I was in JoAnn and just had to pick up copies of the newest knitting magazines (it helped that I had 40% off coupons and a gift card), and inside Vogue Knitting's Knit Simple, I ran across a book review for something new from Judith Durant, "Never Knit Your Man a Sweater (Unless You've Got the Ring)." If you are unfamiliar with the Sweater Curse, please read about it here. This is serious business, folks! Bad things happen when items are knit for special men! Thankfully, this new book has plenty of solutions, and I'm actually considering purchasing it, which is certainly not something I normally would ever think of doing (neither purchasing a new book nor knitting something for a man).

Perhaps my interest in the book is due to my subconsciousness's response to a new man in my life. No, I did not get another fish. This man actually is a man, a human. "D" and I met a few weeks ago and have been making our crazy schedules to collide every now and then, and it's interesting and enjoyable, and we shall see what happens. But today is knitting day, so why am I writing about this now? ...D, perhaps unwittingly, scored gigantic points (not that we're keeping score...) by saying while we were wandering around a store, "Hey, there's yarn here - let's go and you can tell me about yarn."

Wait. You want to hear about yarn??? Obviously not, so what I take it to mean is, "Knitting is important to you, yarn is used in knitting. You are important to me, I want to hear about yarn." Aw. I did not, however, acquiesce to his request, since we were in Wal-Mart, and I just absolutely refuse to oggle over yarn at Wal-Mart, because I am a yarn snob.

Monday, December 18, 2006

the christmas waltz

That's a good song. I have a hard time chosing a favorite Christmas tune. There are so many - ones that celebrate the birth of Christ, ones that celebrate the snow, ones that celebrate the gathering of loved ones...all these elements that are so precious to my Christmas in my mind's eye. Here are some thoughts about the Christmas season, with excerpts from a couple Christmas songs.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas
Outside, not so much - it was 62 degrees F yesterday! Certainly snow is not blanketing the earth... It's been hard for me to get in the Christmas spirit this year, in large part because of the lack of snow. However, little by little things are shaping up. I hung stockings several weeks ago and put up a little tree. This morning I finally dug out the nativity scene I had purchased in Salzburg over the summer (it was still in the suitcase...which means I haven't unpacked the suitcase I used in that bad?). And last week was the departmental holiday party for work.

As the shoppers rush home with
their treasures

Since it hasn't felt like Christmas, I was greatly surprised when I realized last week that there were only 11 days left until Christmas! I had purchased exactly zero presents! And I had sent precisely zero cards! ...Things were looking bad, and the schedule of life wasn't appearing to give me much free time to go out shopping. Instead of trying to figure out how I could possibly manage to combine shopping with some other activity I had in the schedule (hockey and shopping...? church and shopping...? having dinner and shopping...perhaps, although indigestion was a quite possible outcome.), I decided to leave work early on Friday and go out - I was sort of forced to do this, in actuality, because I needed to have many of the items on my list purchased by Sunday, and Saturday was filled with hockey games and work.

I must not have been the only person who thought Friday afternoon shopping was a great idea, because it was packed. For the most part lines were short, but I was glad I'm a big fan of finding a very far away parking spot and walking a long ways to get to stores, because that was what I had to do, and trying to find a "good" spot would have quickly drained all holiday cheer I may have mustered at the time.

The afternoon of shopping turned into a 6-hour ordeal, and I'm not a big fan of shopping to begin with, so by the time I got home, I really felt I knew the meaning of "shop 'til you drop."
the spoils. i even managed to only buy one thing for myself that was completely unnecessary...
But since I really had to get those presents ready for Sunday, I wrapped. In the end, I had a pile of gifts ready to be given to the family my Bible study group adopted through the Salvation Army.We did this last year and now again this year, and it is fast becoming one of my favorite Christmas traditions. It is so rewarding to meet the needs of others, and even the wants of others! for other people is way easier than shopping for myself, particularly when it comes to clothing. Nothing ever fits me, and I usually stomp out of stores in a rage (not really) - but when items are for other people...I'll do my best, but in the end, it's not my problem.

I even managed to make it to a mall in my shopping excursion. Gasp! They had a delightful little place for children.I sort of wanted to ride on the train, myself.

Caroling, caroling, through the snow
As already stated, we haven't got any snow. And so I suppose it's appropriate that I also haven't gone caroling. I had gotten all excited that I was going to go caroling last Thursday, and that certainly added to my holiday cheer, but then that didn't end up happening. I had somehow messed up the dates of two activities the young adult ministry at my church were planning, and when I showed up Thursday night set to go caroling "in the hood", I was surprised to find that it was not indeed caroling night and it was indeed the night we were going to be helping with the high school students, but for some reason that got cancelled, so it was just a little chaotic instead. Ugh, that's what I get for not going the week before when apparently all of this was announced! Oh well. Sadly, I will miss caroling (which actually was scheduled to be this Thursday) because I will be out playing ice hockey. Well, at least there will be ice there!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

out of control

Lots of stuff is changing in my life right now in a variety of areas. Change, in this case, is good, but it's not easy.

Some of the major changes are my "retirement" from a variety of leadership positions related to both school and church. I'm passing on the torch to others so that when I leave the city (oh, please be soon!) the groups I've been helping with will be in very capable hands. It's almost like giving up a baby to someone else - I've put in a lot of time, effort, though, and energy into the groups, and while I embrace the shift of leadership, I find it hard to completely let go.

In essence, I'm going "out of control".

There are good things and bad things to not leading. One of the very good things is not being criticized - criticism is a natural reaction to leaders, and I think it's important for a leader to seriously consider all criticism that he or she receives. That doesn't make criticism any happier to hear, though. Another benefit of not leading is that you are less responsible for dealing with conflicts that arise within the particular group you lead. Already I've seen a new conflict sprout in one of the groups I no longer lead, and I'm so glad I'm not the one who has to mediate the differences. Not leading also gives (in theory) one more time to focus on things in life other than the project being led. This was one major motivation for me to step down from leading one group in particular - I want to devote more concentrated effort to my thesis research in these hopefully last few months of PhD studenthood.

However, with the benefits come difficulties. It's hard to completely let go and allow someone else to go a different route with something one had led for a time. Inevitably new blood brings new ideas and new direction, and such is the way of innovation and progress. However, I find it easy for even the most secure and most detached people to feel a bit of resentment or hurt when a program or concept he or she created or nurtured gets revamped by a new leader. One quickly begins to question if all their previous followers hated the Old Way so much as to so willingly embrace the New Way. The old leader wonders if he or she could have done better and dreams about what might have been if this, that, or the other thing had been done just a tad differently when he or she was leading. And sometimes it gets more personal - ideas that had been offered by the old leader and shunned by the followers but are accepted under the new leadership cause the outgoing leader to wonder if anything he or she said ever spent more than a second between the ears of the followers. It's hard to let go of the power and watch traditions or concepts that had been dear and assumedly vital to the group become abandoned and forgotten. It's hard not to step in and demand, "You have to do this! Because...I said! Because, I know - I led this group for so long, don't you think my experience has taught me anything?"

Not leading is teaching me a lot. It's causing me to trust more and to think harder about how to lovingly convey what I'm thinking when I disagree. In the terms of the Green Lady from C.S. Lewis's Perelandra, it's "making me older."

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

product review: lip balm

I've been doing many things lately that are highly uncharacterstic of me. One was to attend a "makeup party." Actually, it was more of a spa party. My friend Karen's aunt is an agent for BeautiControl, and Avon-esque company that sells skin care and bath products and makeup. Karen had friends over for a spa night where we tried out a bunch of the products. I managed to pick up a couple gifts for people and will be trying out some of their sensitive-skin face solutions (incidentally, the non-sensitive-skin samples I stupidly tried I think are responsible for the just-at-the-brink-of-breaking-out-terribly state in which my face currently is, which is unfortunate because the next week or so I have many people to whom I'm like to put my "best face" forward). The Therma Del Sol line products, particularly the detoxifying bath, smell absolutely incredible, and other friends who've tried out the bath have said great things about it.

My favorite, however, was the lip balm. Perhaps it was a combination of the Lip Apeel "lip mask" with the lip balm, but whatever the case, I've been completely impressed. I've always been a sucker for lip balms. I have an incredible collection of Lip Smackers from days of yore, and I think I own one of every flavor of ChapStick's Flava-Craze line. In the past couple years I've been trusting a combination of Blistex and Burt's Bees to keep my lips from cracking horribly, especially during the winter. But, I've never experienced anything quite like the BeautiControl lip balm.

I applied the lip balm on Sunday evening after treating my lips with the Lip Apeel stuff (which has a consistency much like that gook orthodontists cram in your mouth to make impressions with...that's not so super - but once it's off, it's as my friend Angie declared: "I feel like my lips should be kissed!"), and to my utter surprise, on Wednesday morning my lips were still feeling smooth and soft. That's despite windy weather, hockey practice, standing out in the evening air, working out at the gym, and taking multiple showers.

Conclusion: I approve. More lip balm should be arriving in my possession in about a week. I'll let you know if I ever withdraw my praise.

getting back in the knit of things

It's been a while since I have really worked on knitting anything... Oh, and I still haven't got a picture of Joelle's stocking! But finally over the weekend I pulled out a work-in-progress and got back to work. I wanted something...relaxing. Something...not too complicated. But something...that wasn't boring. I picked out the brioche bodice.

I started this project...who knows when, with the intent of using it more as a vest than a tank. It's a recycling project - I ripped up an old acrylic/wool sweater that really just didn't suit me save for the color, and now I'm reknitting it into something that does. I was introduced to the brioche stitch a while back in Interweave Knits, and I made my first brioche thing last year - a scarf for a friend (which I found out was recently regifted to one of the children she nannies for, who really loved the pink and purple stripes). I enjoy it because while it really only uses the knit stitch, the yarn still moves around purlwise, so my wrist doesn't get hurt from the repetitive motion as easily. looks really neat! It's a wonderful alternative to ribbing. Progress has been slow, even with the rather big yarn (I think it's something like 3-4 stitches per inch in stockinette - for someone who's been all about socks and worsted weight yarn for a long time, that's quite big).

And speaking of socks, I also dragged out the Retro Rib Sock #2 and am looking at it and contemplating putting more work into it. I am so reluctant to do this because I lost my copy of the pattern, which has all the markings for the adjustments I had made since I'm knitting at a different gauge than the original pattern called for. Continuing this sock will require much Thinking, and I'm not totally up for that yet. I believe a thorough cleaning of the apartment might aid me in finding the lost pattern, so I'm motivated to wait until I do that...which might be a long, long time. Nevertheless, I'm wanting more and more to wear the socks, and wearing only one and a half instead of the complete pair isn't really going to cut it.

...Hm. I was just setting up the socks and vest to take pictures and discovered that my camera has no juice in the batteries. Being the forward-thinking person that I am, I had put an extra set of batteries in my camera case. However, in my infinite brilliance, I apparently put in a set of decharged batteries, because they're not working either. ...Yeah...

Well, instead of viewing pictures, might I ask you to think and give some suggestions for a project I'd like to start? For the past four years I have had a World Vision sponsor child named Minteha who lives in Ethiopia. We're supposed to be able to send letters and flat gifts (e.g. bookmarks, coloring books, etc.), and I've never done so. But I was thinking about Minty last night over dinner and thought it would be nice to knit her something to make up for the many years of "neglect." ...What should I make? She's about 12 years old and lives in a rural village where she goes to school and lives with her parents and younger siblings. Any great ideas?

Friday, December 08, 2006

boofy bunny butt

When I was in high school I had the pleasure of having Mrs. Flynn as my English teacher for two years. Mrs. Flynn was enthusiastic and energetic, and I later found out that she had been a physiology major before she became an English teacher, and that's pretty darn interesting. Mrs. Flynn made her students work hard, but we also played hard with her - every now and then we'd have "tea and crumpets"!

One of the fondest memories of English class with Mrs. Flynn was the introduction of the word "boofy." I'm not positive that this is how it is properly spelled, but being that the word was presented in oral but not written form by Mrs. Flynn, I'm not sure it really matters. (I was, however, able to find it spelled that way via Google. See the picture here.) Mrs. Flynn used this word to describe her appearance: she had boofy hair. I knew exactly what she meant! If your hair isn't stick-straight, has a little bit of frizz and a little bit of wire...then you probably know what she means, too! It's sort of like when your hair...raises itself higher than it normally is.

It's like a combination of "big" and "poofy." I personally believe the word (if it's really a word) stems from "bouffant." The classic Jacqueline Kennedy picture gives the gist - it's just that boofy hair doesn't come from hours of styling - it just happens. Especially when there is a significant amount of moisture in the air.

All this comes into play, because poor Miss Joelle, who has been looking very sorry indeed recently - complete with a poly-collar to prevent her from scratching at the drains inserted into the side of her face for two weeks - finally got a haircut! However, it isn't complete yet. I cut from the neck towards the rump, and when I gave up (Joelle can't stand being groomed for an incredibly long time), she ended up with a bit of "boof" on her behind.

When I pointed this out to her, she gave a sniff and flopped onto her side by her favorite chair - just the perfect angle for me to get a picture of the bunny with a fur tutu!

Now, Bethany, that is a very odd looking rabbit!

it's the little things that count

One microliter.

Do you know how much that is? It's 1/1000 of a milliliter. Can't picture a milliliter? A milliliter of water is the "size" of a centimeter cubed. That is not very big. Now, divide that into 1000 parts. That's a microliter.

That's not much at all. Shouldn't matter a single bit, right?


It is the failure of me to add that one microliter that has made my arrival at the lab at 2:30a.m. a complete and utter waste of time and has deprived me of precious sleep. As part of The Big Experiment being carried out this week (starting yesterday, hopefully culminating tomorrow), I spent 16 hours at the lab, grabbed some LuLu's, let the very bored (made a lovely mess by throwing her litter pan around) and upset (much snorting at the Hand that Feeds) rabbit (at least she's not outright ill) out for about a half hour, and went to bed for a mere three hours. Now I'm back, and as I was working on Step One of the 2:30a.m. part of The Big Experiment, I realized...I had forgotten to add one microliter of monensin to the samples I was working with. Which renders the entire experiment completely and utterly useless.

Smart. I am quite sure I can accurately blame this on the fatigue that comes from 15.5 hours of being at the lab and lack of sleep the night before. But it doesn't make it any more enjoyable. Plus, now I'm stuck at the lab, because I need to be back here at 5:30a.m. anyhow to start working on today's regularly scheduled part of The Big Experiment, so it's not worth driving home, trying to sleep for one hour, and driving back. (Plus, I might lose my parking space. ...AND it's totally freezing outside.)

I'm going to go find a corner in which to curl up...

Doesn't it make you want to pursue a PhD in microbiology?

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

update in brief

...The blog has not been a priority in Somebody's life of late... That would be me. Apologies to all who are longing for a peek into my life.

What can I say? My brain has been stuffed with Other Items, mostly people (and a rabbit) and work. An odd combination, considering that I am usually all about only one or the other - life seems to shift between being 100% for work, overcommitting myself to it 24/7, or 100% for other people, putting less thought into my work and more thought into being with others. I've been trying to learn (and apply) a balance between the two. It's tough! Both require a lot of time and effort if they are to be done properly and with quality. And, obviously, other things thus get pushed aside.

Including knitting! Can you believe it? I have not knit for over a week! I have not even wanted to!! I had finished the knitting construction of Joelle's stocking sometime during the Thanksgiving weekend, and then the sock with the un-closed toe sat and sat and sat in the Knitting Bag for about 10 days. Finally I decided to sew it up on Sunday and hang it. Of course, now I'm not truly satisfied with it - I should have used a different size needle on the stranded knitting part - but I'm too lazy to un-do it and reknit, at least for this year.

I also have concluded that I am going to give up on the Aran sweater I've been making zero progress on for the past year. I love the yarn, I love the cables and double seed stitch, but when I think about it, I actually really do not love the pattern. It is a "traditional" Aran design - a "square" body with unshaped arm holes, and the sleeves stick straight out to form a T. And, goodness knows why and when this occurred in my unfashionable mind, I just don't want that sort of dumpy sweater! I want something more fitted. Something like I know I saw in a Vogue Knitting from I believe last year - it's somewhere in my Pile of Knitting Magazines. ...And that means I'm going to rip out some 16 inches worth of ribbing, cables, and textured knitting, which pains me to think about, considering I also painstakingly tubular-cast on the bottom edge of both the front and back sides of this particular project - a first for me, and something which took an entire evening to do properly!

...When I will get to that is anyone's guess!