FO: Maluka

Pattern: Maluka by Bea Schmidt
Yarn: Knit Picks Gloss Fingering
Needles: US 6

It’s FO Friday! I’m finally posting about Maluka after completing it in March 2013.

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Yeah, I am so far behind on these. You should see my Ravelry project page. Grossly out of date.

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I really liked the pattern–it was easy, understandable, and fun–and while I loved the final product, I felt it came out too small. I don’t  know if it’s small because I didn’t meet gauge (I never used it), I didn’t understanding the construction, or it was the right size, but I need it bigger.

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I tried wearing it different ways, but I couldn’t make it work for me.

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I even tried dressing like a babushka.

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Fortunately, my daughter decided she wanted it, and it fit perfectly. Since it did, I let her keep it.

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I will definitely make this one again, but a little bigger.

“I never let my schooling get in the way of my education.” — Mark Twain

I started writing a post all about my knee, and then deleted it. I’m done focusing on the negative. Instead, I want to focus on the positive.

I now have a graduate assistantship in the nutrition department in my school. I get to work for a professor doing grunt work, but I think it will be a good opportunity. Plus it will help pay for school.

I’ve had a lot of opportunities this summer. They are not paid, but they are great experiences and will be good on the resume. I’ve been able to do grunt work in a research project, write for a nutrition blog, and work at a farmers’ market. Although, I had to drop my farmers’ market gig, because of my knee. BUT I’M BEING POSITIVE.

My daughter is entering kindergarten in September, and is excited to ride the bus.

I’m off for the rest of the summer. I’ve cleaned some of my desk, some of the refridgerator, and most of the house.

I’m working on a hand warmer pattern that, if I get the courage, I will try to sell. And, I have beautiful yarn.

Life is beautiful.

The two most amazing people I know.

The two most amazing people I know.

The End is Nigh

Classes are over for the semester and finals are all that is left. Yay! I will be so excited to be done with classes. At least done for a week. Then I have 6 weeks of microbiology, but THEN I have the rest of the summer off. I’ve been looking for a nutrition-related job to fill the hours, but I may end up just doing volunteer work, cleaning, knitting, spinning, reading… Okay, just knitting, spinning, and reading. Cleaning can suck it.

OP has had her first grounding of a sort. She is very…particular about food. Picky? Stubborn? She likes to go to her restaurants and eat her food at home. Every night is a meltdown because how dare I put ziti on her plate, because she doesn’t like it because it’s not spaghetti and the 80 million other times I served ziti she had a meltdown before eating until she finally broke down and ate it and realized it was good and she did like it, but really she just wants hot dogs like she wanted hot dogs last night. Why can’t we giver her hot dogs for dinner every night? Life is horrible!!! You don’t understand me!!! I’m running away!!!! You’re the worst parents ever!!!!

We’ve tried having her pick out dinner or make it, like all the experts and my nutrition experts suggest, and she’s really into the process, but refuses to eat it. Unless it’s pancakes or hot dogs.

On Sunday, we had to pick a restaurant for dinner and she wanted “Old McDonalds” (that’s what she calls it) because some toy is there (thanks, marketing). We didn’t go to Old McDonalds. Instead we went to a restaurant where there were rocks outside perfect for kicking at Daddy in her angst. Needless to say, she’s been punished and can’t go to any of her restaurants for two weeks.

She’s taking it pretty well, and we’re using it as a teaching (torture?) tool. We went to a Thai restaurant one night and an Indian restaurant the other night. We’ve gone before, usually with a meltdown in tow (especially with Indian), but this time she was much more open and even happily tried new foods. Without a meltdown! And liked them! We made a big deal about how proud we were of her trying new things and all that crap, and I’m hoping this is a new trend that continues after the punishment is over, because I would love to not have a meltdown with every meal that doesn’t meet her specifications.

And the winner is…

OP* ran her very first 1 mile race. At 4 years old, she was one of the youngest, but there were a couple other 4 year olds there. Originally, we signed her up for the 200m version, but she refused. She wanted to do the long one. She’s her daddy.

I’m doomed….

I ran the race with her. One, because we weren’t sure if she’d make it back in time for Daddy’s race and he didn’t want to miss it. Two, because she asked and I’m a sucker.

We started at the word go and she quickly sped to last place. Sort of shambled, really. Shambled with effort. Then we started to lose the pack. By about 1/4 mile in she became upset because she was going to be last. Fortunately, at that point, we passed a boy about her age who had decided he was done with the race. As we ran and walked, I told her that it didn’t matter if she was last, because being last meant that she still did it and didn’t give up. I pointed out that she was beating that little boy because he gave up.

She stayed last. Apparently, she has my running DNA. According to results, she was over 2 minutes behind the person in front of her (although she crossed just behind a little girl who was either a ninja and sneaked over the timer line or cheated). Fortunately it didn’t matter to her. She had done it by herself, step after step without anyone carrying her. And that is what is important. Sometimes, we need to be reminded of that.

*For those new to the blog, OP stands for Optimus Prime which is what we called our daughter in the womb.

Phosphoglucoisomerase

No rhyme or reason to today’s title, I’m just studying metabolism and I love the word. I am so tired right now. The Husband had a ride this morning, so OP and I went to the farmers’ market and the Y. I did weights and the sort of elliptical machine thing, while she played in the room (probably infinitely more fun than playing with mommy). This afternoon we wandered around a nearby town with the Husband and I desperately need tea.

Have I made it? No, why would I do that?

My knee is a lot better, but still weird. I can’t kick or sit/lay in certain positions without it starting to hurt, but I’m able to do everything else. I’ve been jumping and can jump on a step with 4 riser…things without pain. I correctly did child’s pose in yoga last week! Not slightly skewed to the side. It wasn’t as comfortable as I suspect it should be, but it’s a start. AND I’ve started running. Well, sort of. I’m running about 2 seconds during a walk, but I’ll take it. Next week I’ll try for 3 seconds.

OP has gotten into Sophia the First recently, which she’s watching right now. I loathe it. It feels very dated and, while I haven’t seen many of the episodes, the gender roles seem very traditional. I miss her obsession with Rescue Bots and My Little Ponies. They at least show her stronger female characters that are not princesses. Although, [spoiler alert] Twilight Sparkle is one now.[/spoiler alert] Plus, they were good. I could watch those a bazillion times. Sophia the First makes me want to want to gouge my eyes out with a spoon and poke holes in my eardrums. At least it’s not Dora.

Health Apps

Last year, I bought Zombies, Run!. Wait, two years ago? Whatever. I may have mentioned it before, because I am in love with and obsessed by it. It’s an app that tells a story interspersed with your music during your run (or walk). You can also turn on zombie attacks which forces you to “sprint” at various points or be eaten by zombies. And by sprint, I mean run for your life because the fake zombies are totally after you for realz! You also don’t need to run with it. Theoretically, you could walk with a fast walk or lame, limping jog during the zombie attacks and still have it work. There are two seasons and a Couch to 5K version. I’m towards the end of the first season (which is really sad if I really bought this 2 years ago), and as soon as winter is over, I can hopefully run outside again (or just run at all) and finish the story. I’m dying to know what will happen.

As I’ve mentioned, I can’t run right now with my knee. I did get to run a couple weeks ago in a special machine that supported 30% of my weight. It was awesome, but not something I can do again. I need to strengthen my knee a lot more before running is fully allowed. And the non-runner in me died when I realized how much I miss it. Fortunately, the makers of Zombies, Run! made a walking app that doesn’t require GPS! It’s called The Walk. Like Zombies, Run! it is based on a story. Unlike Zombies, the story is not playing as you walk, but rather you open up story items that you can listen to later (unless there is a setting I haven’t found that allows listening to the story as I go). Also, there is no sprinting portion where you have to go faster or be killed. It’s really a pedometer of sorts that tracks how long you are walking and updates the internal map. The Husband plays it while running and, according to the FAQs, you can use it on the elliptical or for any other repetitive exercise that it can track. The goal of each chapter is to unlock story pieces and win categories (found all items, within 24 hours, and no breaks over 3 hours). It makes me want to get out (or into the Y) to walk so I can know what is going on. I’ve walked 8 episodes (some twice to win each category) and 3 challenges after maybe three weeks of playing. And I may have been known to walk around the first floor of my house for 10 minutes just to finish a chapter, but don’t tell anyone. It’s truly addicting and there had better be a second season soon.

I’m sneezing

Happy New Year, um, 22 days ago! I spent the last 10 seconds of 2013 yelling that I had a knot in my yarn and I can’t start the new year with a knot! We’ll see if tangled yarn is an omen to how the year will go. I’ve only knit once since the new year. Hopefully, if it is an omen, it’s not knitting related. Really, I just need to get a simple project on the needles. Maybe tomorrow.

Classes started on Tuesday. The 8am class was cancelled due to the professor’s sickness (yay for me!). The second class and related lab were not (boo!). The second class was food science and it looks…daunting, but don’t they all?

We are all sick right now. I think it’s a cold, but there are a lot of sniffles and coughing over this way. Don’t come near us or you risk contamination. The down-side of being sick is that I couldn’t do my volunteer work today. For my degree, I need to volunteer 24 hours in some sort of nutrition/food area. I’ve been volunteering with a woman who teaches various nutrition classes, and it has been really fun. The last few classes were how to eat with diabetes. I was cooking for the classes, but couldn’t today because I am sick. I don’t want give someone norovirus, not that I have norovirus, but still.

I’ve been finding the class interesting for two reasons. First, I learned was that I love cooking for people and showing them how to eat healthy food that also tastes good. When I’m looking for experience and jobs, I need to keep that in mind.

The second thing I found interesting is how applicable one of the concepts was to life. Hold on, it’s going to get cheesy and preachy for a bit. One of the questions asked by the nutritionist is, “Can you drink OJ?” The attendees said, no. However, the reality is yes, you can drink OJ, but you need to keep it within limits and adjust other parts of your meal. Wait, let me stop a second. I am not yet a dietitian or even a nutritionist. I am a student. I am talking about what they said in a research-based class. I’m not going to argue what your doctor, mother, crunchy friend, etc. has told you. If you want more information about this topic, see a REGISTERED DIETITIAN or diabetes-certified dietition. I discovered in class that if you have diabetes, your insurance usually will cover a visit or two to a dietitian.

Anyway, so, per the research-based class, you can have OJ. How? Well, at meals a diabetic should get roughly 45-60 grams of carbs per meal (AGAIN, SEE A REGISTERED DIETITIAN FOR SOMETHING SPECIFIC TO YOU OR MORE SPECIFIC IN GENERAL). So a 1/2 cup of OJ is 15 g of carbs, if I remember correctly. That means, you can have a 1/2 cup OJ and still be within your limit. If you like a large glass of OJ and a big bowl of cereal and milk (milk has carbs), then, you need to figure out a compromise and adjust accordingly. Maybe cut down the size of your cereal so you are within limits, keep the OJ small, or replace the cereal with eggs or something less carb-laden. Simple, right? However, listening to the teacher talk about compromising on food, hit home for every day things. In life, you need to make compromises. If I want to exercise daily, I need to let go of getting a perfect grade on a project or stop worrying about cleaning everything. If I want to spend time with my family, then I need to pull back on work or extra-curricular activities. If you don’t want to kill yourself, you need to figure out what you can live with. It’s something I always knew, but when the teacher said it, I finally understood. Now, we’ll see if I can remember it.