In the past two days I've gotten cute holiday cards from [ profile] starrbeam and [ profile] rynn_sama. Thank you, girls! <3 Lindsay, I know you're moving, so where should I send your card? *is so behind on mail*

Mmm, drinking white Russians makes me sleepy, apparently. Or maybe I'm just generally tired.

My serger, according to the nice man at the sewing machine shop, should be okay. They don't sell this brand in Japan, so the best he could do was tell me to get rid of the washer. Here's hoping things run smoothly!

My legwarmer is progressing. Big, bold stripes are where it's at!

While shopping for a gift this evening (secret Santa exchange at work), I told myself very firmly that I would buy nothing for myself... but then I discovered that the Kichijouji Parco has a Cocue* and a bunch of other shops that I like. So I ended up buying a pair of shoes and two pairs of earrings (on sale! *feels justified*). I'm telling myself they're Christmas presents, so I'll put them under the tree and not think about them until next week.

My movie/book/tv reviews are... fermenting. But I made a list!

Only four more days of work to go... then it's two weeks of freedom, which I will kick off in style with tenimyu! :D

* No, the irony of the name is not lost on me. >_< But still, they have really cute, really comfortable shoes.
The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants )

Today didn't see as much progress on the blanket as I'd have liked, but at least it's all in one piece, now. And heavy. *prepares to pay a fortune in shipping*
Ça achève! Almost done B2's blanket! Only one more row to attach, then sewing across the rows, then the border. Then trying to find a way to package it, before taking it to the post office and paying a fortune to ship it. I'm not even trying for Christmas anymore, I just hope it'll get to him before New Year's.

Oh, I started knitting a pair of socks this evening.

All right, what to review next? Since I don't feel like tackling anything serious tonight, let's go for some disjointed commentary on America's Next Top Model, season 1 ) and America's Next Top Model, season 8 )

I don't feel I need to rate these ones out of 10; it's ANTM, you know what to expect.
Xmas: I haz it.

And here's a shot of my blanket. Finished it just in time, it keeps me warm at night. There will eventually be a white border around it, but there's plenty of other stuff that takes priority before that. In the meantime, admire how I put a few squares in the wrong way, so that my stripes don't match.

I'm going to be on holidays starting Friday next, so I'll have plenty of time to do my proposed end-of-year finishing up blitz.


Dec. 2nd, 2007 06:07 pm
Today's review: Carnivale, first season. )

I'll leave it at that for now and get more into detail when I've watched the second season. Until then, if any of you have watched this series, I'd be curious to know what you thought of it.

ETA: Whoops, forgot to rate it. I think I'll give it a 7.5, to be reviewed after season 2.

Last night, I finished my blanket! But I'm too lazy to take, upload and post a picture tonight, so some other time. Next knitting to be done: blanket for B2 (assembling), the string bag I started (assemble and knit straps) and knit myself a pair of mittens.
I spent the last day of November puttering around, planning my assault upon Brother #2's soon-to-be-assembled blanket. Because I'd like to get it to him in time for Christmas, and it's now in 180 separate pieces. But before that, I have to finish my own knitted blanket, which is mostly done; only two rows (14 squares total) remain to be attached. The reason my brother's blanket has so many more squares is that the squares are smaller (about 5 inches squared versus the 6 1/2 squared of my blanket) and I was going for a double bed size, so he and his girlfriend don't have to fight over it. >:D I'm hoping it won't take as long to assemble as mine is, because I've thought of a newer, possibly sturdier way of doing so. I put B1's blanket together using crochet, but it made bulky seams, which I didn't want on mine (knit in cotton yarn and much stretchier) and don't want on B2's blanket either (knit in various artificial yarns, many of them bulky to begin with). We'll see which is the most succesful! And then -- gah, I just remembered that I want to knit or crochet a border. Crocheting might be faster, though, and I could bust out my 2 beginner's crochet stitches.

I also spent part of yesterday thinking about how to tackle my review-a-day. After making a list, of course. I thought of writing the titles out on slips of paper and drawing one at random every morning, but there are some that I want to review together, as a compare/contrast exercise. I thought of grouping them by genre, but that might make people think I'm more organised in my reading and viewing than I am. Then I thought I should do it in roughly chronological order, because there are some items that I've been dragging along for a while, unsure of how I'd like to tackle them.

Oh, and it should go without saying that these reviews will be riddled with spoilers, but since I'm usually way behind on watching and reading what's hot NOW, I doubt you're in too much danger. Unless you really don't want to find out the surprise, twist ending of, say, Flashdance. XD

Today, I'll bite the bullet and go ahead with something that I finished watching in June, if I recall correctly: Twin Peaks, both seasons + Fire Walk With Me )

I thought I'd rate things on a scale of 1 to 10 and just so you all know, a passing grade is 6 or more, and I'll never give anything a perfect 10. My final verdict for Twin Peaks:

First season: 9
Second season: 8
Fire Walk With Me: 6.5

And there it is, Day 1 is done!
I've been sewing! Because it shouldn't be all skirts, all the time. )

I also finished some pyjamas (no picture) and am mostly done a skirt. Much knitting has also been done, but as it's pretty much all squares for my blanket, it's not so exciting to write about. HowEVER! I've only got one or two more squares to go, depending on how much yarn I have, so then it'll be a fun evening or two of weaving in ends before I get to the actual blanket-construction part. Because as you all know, Tokyo in July is the perfect setting for warm blankets. >_< Though really, the temperature has been unusually cool this week, with a dip BELOW 20 degrees the other night! *shock and disbelief* At any rate, I may have to review my blanket plan, as it seems I managed to get 18 squares each out of 2 of my colours, and only 15 each out of two other colours, from what were supposedly balls of the same size and weight as the first. Bloh.

And now, some more random Yuu Yuu Hakusho subtitles! O_O )

Aaaaaaaaand, some television critique! Spoilers for... )

That's enough for now, this entry is too long as it is and I have a skirt to finish!

ETA: Regarding the I am a cigarette-addict, this is my wife Koko line, I've just had a thought that it's possible the kanji for the character's name mean that, but had a different (phonetic) reading in Japanese. But I'm too lazy to look it up.
The urge to sew seems to have kicked in again, after my mad little dash last week. A curtain, a pillowcase and a skirt in two days? Get a hold of yourself, woman! Now I've embarked on the Adventure of the Silk Pyjamas and have so far crossed the River Pants Are Cut, but have come into the shadow of Mount Perhaps I Should Have Cut A Bit Wider. Once that peak is scaled, it will be smooth going across the Plains of Sewing The Pants and after that, the mighty cliffs of What The Hell Do I Want The Top To Look Like, Anyway? I have a rough idea, but I suppose I'll see when I get there. These are to be, after all, elegant lounging pyjamas so I can elegantly lounge around in my tiny one-room apartment.

My Soup Plan is again in effect this week and going nicely. I really should add ginger, Japanese onions and carrots aren't quite enough on their own for flavourful broth. Still, it's so nice to be able to eat almost as soon as I get home.

For me, first sign of getting seriously into a hobby is when I actually feel a desire to read the instruction manual for the equipment. I tend to jump in without bothering, as I have a practical enough mind that I can usually figure things out on my own, whether using a sewing machine or assembling furniture. Also, I learn hands-on skills better when I do something myself or figure it out on my own, which I find a bit strange, because otherwise I'm a very visual person and my memory is mostly visual (I remember studying for tests and during the exam, "seeing" my notes in my head and remembering "Ah, I wrote that bit of information in blue ink on the lower half of the left-hand page. Now, what was it that I wrote?") But when it comes to physical tasks, I have to perform the actions myself. I think my mother showed me how to use the washing machine at least five times when I was younger and I kept forgetting how. It wasn't until I was forced to do it on my own that I figured it out and then never forgot.

All that to say that yesterday I dug out the instruction manual for my digital camera. The more pictures I take, the better I want them to be. I used to be a conscientious photographer, because I was always limited, with a roll of film, to a certain number of pictures. Especially with slides, I didn't want to waste film on mediocre shots. With a digital camera, though, I can click away as much as I like, or until the battery's dead, but I'd still like to know how to get certain effects. I'm bracing myself for the fact that with what I have, a standard point-and-click camera, there isn't a whole lot I can do about exposure and focus and all that jazz, but it would be nice to be able to get the picture I want to begin with and not think "I could probably make this look better in Photoshop." Because Photoshop is another skill I have yet to acquire and also because I don't like manipulating photos too much.

In knitting news, I've finished my fingerless mitts. Of course, I finished them the day the weather changed for the warmer, so I don't think I'll be needing them until next year. In retaliation, I started another pair of socks.

Also, I finished reading:

Tai-Pan (James Clavell): I read Shogun a few years ago and liked it well enough, so I borrowed this one from M-P. It was a bit of a shock at first, how masculine it all is, because I started it the same day I finished reading The Poisonwood Bible. Still, it was an enjoyable read, though certainly not life-altering. The author decided to keep the characters' dialects and pidgin intact, so there was a lot of "na" and "baint" and "deaded", which would probably annoy many readers, but I got used to it after a while and didn't mind so much. The ending seems somewhat abrupt and I can only assume there's a sequel that explains what happens to Culum and Tess and Noble House. I guess I'd read it if someone lent it to me, but I doubt I'll be seeking it out on my own.
X-Men: The Last Stand: What can I say? It's an X-Men movie! Brainless fun. But why does it seem that most of the non-white mutants are on Magneto's side? (Pufferfish boy, shockwave girl played by Omahyra, etc.) Also, I cringe whenever I see poor Ian McKellan in his Magneto get-up; why have such a handsome man wear such a silly-looking helmet?

The Curse of the Golden Flower: Could Gong Li's face be any more perfect? She looks like a sculpture, and I mean that in the best possible way. If for nothing else, see this one for the sets, the costumes and the scene of the dozens and dozens of ladies-in-waiting getting ready in the morning. Incredibly gorgeous. While not a GREAT movie, it's certainly fun to watch and has all the tragic love, family in-fighting, heaving bosoms, elaborate battle scenes and trampling of chrysanthemums you could ask for.

In other news, I have graduated from knitting squares to knitting a shawl/scarf/wrap! My mother has shown me how to make a cool-looking loopy stitch, which is really only k2tog + yarnover, but is new to me. I'm using this thick, velvety novelty yarn in deep raspberry and it will have two big tangerine stripes.


Jan. 8th, 2007 05:50 am
The Illusionist: Nice little movie, though I was a bit sad so much of it took place indoors, i.e. where we couldn't see imperial, turn-of-the-century Vienna. All the way through the movie, I kept having the nagging feeling that I knew the guy who plays Prince Leopold, but I couldn't figure out who he was: Rufus Sewell, who played Mark in Tristan and Isolde. He has rather striking eyes, which is why I remembered him, and he's not a half-bad actor, either.

Muriel's Wedding: I'd seen it before, but it's the kind of movie I don't mind seeing over and over and poor what's-his-face accidentally unzipping the beanbag chair always cracks me up.

It seems that since I've (sort of) stopped buying fabric, I've turned to knitting to satisfy the urge. Witness the birth of a new stash, people! Still knitting squares, it's so easy and mindless a thing to do when you don't feel you can concentrate properly on anything.



February 2012

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