Yarn Along 4/23/2014

Blue Diary

This week I am reading Blue Diary , by Alice Hoffman.  I finished one square of my Yurt Throw, which means I only have one square left to go!!! Then I have to block them, sew them and add the border.  The finished blanket should look like this pattern/progress chart.

 

pattern

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I also made a lot of progress on the baby blanket, Anna’s Owls.  I really like how this one is coming out.  And using thing bulky yarn makes it knit up super fast!

Book Review: Advanced Web Analytics

Advanced Web Metrics with Google AnalyticsAdvanced Web Metrics with Google Analytics by Brian Clifton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Published in 2012 and it is ALREADY out dated. :( That is web analytic though. There is however a LOT of really great basic information here that is still very relevant. I like that he discusses not jut reporting, but proper coding and set up which is critical for good reporting.

It was a great refresher as I start to build out a new web analytics dashboard. I agree with the author that for reporting out, you ha to have a dashboard outside of you analytics platform to share with marketing and upper management who will not access that type of tool.

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A whole lot of knitting going on

Wow, I got a LOT done this week I think!!!

I finished my cowl for my turquoise set and I really like how it came out!!!  Once it was finished it relaxed and got more slouchy.  :) And I think I have enough yarn over for some fingerless gloves. But hopefully it will get warm around here soon and I won;t need gloves till next year.

And I started on a baby blanket for my boss, due in August and it is a boy.  I love the owl pattern I keep seeing, so I am doing a variation of it.  I changed it up and it is going SO fast.  I am using Lion brand Wool Ease Thick and Quick.  Then I changed that pattern to 5 x 5 owls and added one owl in the center.  Based on my swatch, it should come out to 36″x36″.

I love how cute this is looking!

So it should end up looking like this, where the big Os are owls and the xoxox’s are seed stitch:

OwlDetail

And I have just 3 squares left to go on my yurt throw!!!  I finished just one sqare this week, bu I am getting closer.  Now I just have to order some yarn for the border and figure out how to ad that to this monster!

This weekend, we took the dog to her favorite park where she loves to chase the squirrels.  Lucky for them, the are much faster than she is.  There were finally a few little signs of spring around here and the birds have started to return to the city.

Book Reivew: The Probable Future

The Probable FutureThe Probable Future by Alice Hoffman

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I kind of like this book, even if it was a little cheesy. It had a bit of romance, of handful of family dysfunction and a touch of magic :)

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Block & Redesign

I have not been knitting much, so I know I have not made much progress.  This week I started reading The Probable Future and I am almost finished with my Cowl!  I think I just want to make it a little longer so it will slouch a little more.  :)  The cables for this pattern are from the pattern Alokananda Beret, I had tried to make the scarf, but it kept curling, so I decided to just knit it in the round and make a cowl.

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For my Yurt Throw I am working on, I had been really concerned that the blocks were coming out to be very difference sizes.  So I decided to try blocking a few to see if I could get them to be at least similar in size and it worked!!!!

The only problem is these squares ended up 35×15, not 9×9 like the pattern calls for.  I realized that with squares this size the blanket was going to be HUGE.  So I changed it from 7×7 to 6×6 which will make it 78×90 before the border, a very good size.  I also fond by making it smaller, that i am almost done!!! Only 4 squares left to make!!!  So here is the new redesign:

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Post Offce – 3.5 stars :)

Post OfficePost Office by Charles Bukowski

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Such a strange sad character. This guy does seem to care much about anything but drinking, women and betting at the racetracks, but is quick to lose interest in all of these vices except the drinking. For a guy who loves women, it seems odd that he becomes unhappy after marrying a young, beautiful, rich women who “molests” him daily. When he takes 90 days off and does nothing but bet at the tracks and is winning, he quickly become disenchanted with this vice as well. He just seems to float along in life going with what ever job or woman comes along without any devotion or direction.

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A One Star Book

As Meat Loves Salt As Meat Loves Salt by Maria McCann
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

I am so glad to be finished with this book. I don’t remember how the book got into my house, but I saw all the praise for it on the back and that it had won ECONOMIST Best Book of the Year, so I decided to read it. I was very surprised to find this book was very boring. It was really hard to force myself to finish this book. I did not enjoy the any of the characters, especially the main character, who is a very violent, jealous, dislikable man. The plot was not believable or even enjoyable. What a disappointment.

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Yarn Along & A Frozen Island – 3/12/2013

This week was pretty busy, but I made some progress on my turquoise set and I am (still) reading Post Office.

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I had wanted to make the scarf like in the Alokananda pattern, but I was having so many issues with it curlying, so I decided to make it into a cowl.  I just took the first two diamonds from the cable pattern (20 stitches) and repeated it 5 times in the round.   I thin the width is good, maybe it could be a little wider, but I think the blocking and finishing may fix that.

This weekend, we wen tout to see what has become of the island after this long frozen winter only to find the river is still iced over!  But from across the river I could see that the dock was still there (I wonder if the barrels have been destroyed by the ice, if so, it will sink when it melts), the outdoor shower did survive and we had left our tent because the river became icy before we could go out to get it, and I was shocked to see ti still STANDING!  This winter has had so much wind, and icy and snow, but the tent is still up!  So I just that is a good sign for putting a yurt on the island :)

Book Review: David & Goliath

David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling GiantsDavid and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants by Malcolm Gladwell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another interesting book by Malcolm Gladwell. The book argues that often in life the giants are not a large as they appear and the shepard boy not as weak. It is possible to find strength or advantages in aspects of our lives we may consider to be a downside or disadvantage. The book also describers how most progress can be made only through be disagreeable: by thinking differently from others and being willing to state that different position. I also like his point that a person, agency or government can only have successful authority if they have establishes legitimacy: that is the people the are trying to control must feel like they have a voice and the law must be predictable and fair.

I know that this book, like all of Malcolm’s other books, takes one point of view that he wants to get across and tell us stories to back up this point. He does not show the other side of the story, but he always has an interesting point of view and does and great job of captivating us with his storytelling skills.

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One short book & review – Lying

LyingLying by Sam Harris

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

That’s was a short little book! I think he has some good points. It was written to convince us that we should be completely honest in everything we say. He give many examples of everyday lies and why he thinks we should not tell your friends she does not look fat in the dress if she does.  Worth the quick little read to hear what he has to say :)

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