Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Oh the weather outside

We are currently getting smashed by a winter storm. Last night we got 2 inches of snow and another of ice. Josh and I went to get some insulation for the crawl space and actually spun out on the road that goes to Lowe's. Luckily all those years of doing doughnuts in parking lots served me well and we were fine. We spun IN the road, not into the ditch. The sucky thing was that Lowe's was all out of the R-19 polyester insulation we wanted and I just couldn't bring myself to buy fiberglass insulation. That stuff is dangerous and it's bad to work with.

Today I am home because we are under a level 2 snow emergency so driving is discouraged. The snow keeps falling faster and faster. I tried to convince the husband to go out and take a picture, but he says he's not going outside in this. Good side is, I get to work on my lovely legwarmers and hope to finish them up today. That will qualify them for the December SKA challenge. Bad side is, I will miss my first yoga class. I've been practicing Forrest yoga for about four years now and I really love it. Sadly when we moved from California I had to leave my classes behind and I haven't felt motivated to do it on my own. I found a very nice place that is connected with the local yarn shop, Temptations (, and was excited to get back into the groove. I guess it will have to wait until next Wednesday. Bummer.

I'm ready for spring so I can enjoy my knitting nook upstairs. It is way too cold up there right now. Doesn't it look inviting?

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Nature's refrigerator

Today the weather predicted scattered snow flurries. We went to get groceries and run errands and it all went crazy. Two inches of snow have fallen so far and the roads are a mess. Luckily we made it home fine. I say, why pay for the energy of chilling a bottle of wine when you can have nature do it for you.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Stupid insurance...

We received a letter today kindly letting us know that our homeowners' insurance was being canceled in 30 days. Apparently Esurance had a home inspector come out the day before we closed on our house who only just had his results looked at (a MONTH later). He said the slate roof was old and dilapidated and the porches were bad as well. Their answer to this wasn't to ask us to remediate anything or to even talk to us. They just sent us a letter. My husband called and they refused to let him even talk to the inspector nor could they confirm that he was knowledgeable about slate. We had a structural engineer and slate expert come out to inspect our house before we bought it. He said the slate was in wonderful condition. The previous owners had a roofer out in May to replace any old worn out slates and we had one again to fix a small leak before we would close on the house.

Long story short..Esurance, I call shenanigans! I plan to cancel my car insurance with them and tell everyone I know that they are a horrible company to work with. The best part was that we called Nationwide's local office and not only did the guy know the house we moved into but he also came over 10 minutes after we called, went over everything with us, got us a better deal on home and car insurance, and said he didn't really see any issues other than the porch which we want to update anyway. *sigh* I just don't get it.

Anyway, I've been doing tons of research on green building materials. Both Josh and I are very committed to being responsible citizens of the Earth and we want to do that in our home as well. Apparently, there are rubber shingles made from recycled tires that are made to look like slate. They last for 50 years with some having lifetime warranties, can be nailed in (slate has to be "hung" kind of like a picture frame), and are extremely wind resistant. I can't wait to slap those puppies up on the porch when we get it done. Some good info can be found here:

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

We did it!

We survived until the new president! I have watched every inauguration that has happened in my lifetime and I have to say at no others did I feel so...good. I felt great yesterday. It was like a great weight was lifted off my shoulders. I don't really know how to express it, but I hope someday I can tell my children how things were during the last eight years and hopefully how they changed. I'm excited that science will once again have a place of respect. What can I say, my husband is an unemployed chemist. We need more science. I am also pleased that climate change is finally not something we will be arguing about the existence of but rather what to do about.

Anyway, off my soapbox and onto knitting. I worked on my Blackrose socks from's newest issue. I am knitting them in Handmaiden Casbah and let me just say I freaking LOVE this yarn. It is soooo soft. It's a bit dark to see the pattern but I don't even care. I am enjoying the experience of working with it so much that I could be knitting plain stockinette and still be having a blast. I finished almost one entire leg while watching the inauguration at work. They were sweet enough to broadcast it for us in the cafe so we could all see it and ostensibly not suck up their bandwidth streaming it 4,000 times.

My husband and I were awakened the other night to a sound very like a spoon tapping on the counter over and over. Now, this freaked us both out because it was coming from inside the house. Josh loaded up the shotgun and stalked the house, finding nothing. We sort of wrote it off to weird old house syndrome until this morning. I opened up my lunchbag to find...mouse droppings. Yes, we have been invaded by a mouse. My guess is it probably tried to find a place out of the subzero temps we have been experiencing. The fact that it has lived this long is ironic because I live with these characters:

Three RAT terriers. They are bred to hunt and kill small game and vermin. My oldest,Einstein, has even killed a rat and a mouse in his day. Planck has gone up and made friends with a gopher. Cordova is as yet untested (though she ignored said gopher completely to go lick our neighbor). So kids, you're on report. I expect results pronto. Let's see how they do.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

So freaking cold!

Last night Josh and I were nestling down to go to sleep and reached back to adjust the big body pillow I had put up against the wall. We kind of use it in place of a headboard just to insulate our heads a bit from the wall. It felt a bit wet behind the pillow so we moved it away. There was freaking ice on the wall!!! ICE!!! In the house! The best we can figure is that since it was insulated from the heated air hitting it, it got cold and there was probably trapped moisture back there. It was trippy though. Last night it was -12 degrees Fahrenheit.

Our dogs hate going out in this kind of weather. They just run to the bottom of the stairs, pee as fast as they can, and run back up. Even our friendly raccoon who lives in our woodpile came out this morning for his daily forage and trudged back to the woodpile after about a minute of being out. I was going to photograph him but I don't blame him at all for not wanting to be out.

Last night I was sitting in my chair watching the Daily Show with Josh and I cast on another sock. Now, I really don't need any other projects. I have some beautiful legwarmers I am working on that I'm nearly done with one of and I have the dreaded size 12 sock of doom. There were empty needles, cashmere sock yarn, and a new Knitty pattern and the temptation was just too great. I vow to finish the legwarmers before the socks though. See, they are so pretty:

I'd like to wear them so I can use all the skirts I own again. I've been pants only since about November.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

One of the great things about having acreage

You never know who might show up for breakfast. We were pouring our coffee in the kitchen the other day and looked out to see this.

So cute! I'm sure I won't think so once we have our vegetable garden in but for now I'm enjoying all the various creatures.

I finished my hat today at lunch after a bit of a frogging. I made the Sweetie Pie hat from the Purl Bee I liked the pattern and it only used about 3/4 of a ball of Malabrigo Silky Merino. The only problem was the stated length in the pattern. For the medium size, the pattern says to work until the hat measures 7-7.5 inches from the cast on before starting the decreases. Now, I might have a small head but this resulted in the hat being about a half inch too long. I had to frog back all my decreases and eight normal rows and then restart the decreases. I found that 6.5 inches worked much better for my head. I love it though and it is currently keeping my head quite toasty. Today is my birthday so it was a nice present to myself.

We got our first gas bill for our house today and man, not as bad as I thought but replacing the furnace has definitely jumped up on our priority list. I've conceded kicking it down a few degrees so now it is 58 during the week and 60 at night and 60 during the weekend. Hopefully that will make it doable until we can afford a geothermal system. I'm very excited to get moving on it since it would also give us air conditioning and we can hook up our hot water to it. There is a $3000 tax credit with our name on it and we wants it preciouss we does. *ahem* sorry.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

New Year's resolution #1 down!

I had quite a few New Year's resolutions this year, all of which I felt would be easy to accomplish. One of them was to start a blog. I avidly read a great many blogs but just couldn't think of what to call mine, what to focus on, where to host it, etc. My husband and I recently bought a beautiful house that was built in 1900 and I have a spent a lot of time at Go there, I can wait. You will probably be a while. It sucks me in constantly. So I thought, why not write about my knitting AND learning about our house and how to update it. Surely other people might like to know this info as well. So bam-this old knit. Let's see if I get sued. :)
I suppose this first post should be an obligatory about me post, although friends will probably be the only ones reading this. My name is Nina, I'm 31 and an accountant. I am one of those odd birds who LOVES accounting. I mean it, I love it. I love the sense it makes, the simplicity, the black and whiteness of it. I learned about debits and credits at age five when my mom took me to her college courses with her and it just clicked. I made tiny ledgers at home and mocked up fake taxes.


I also really love knitting. I spend a lot of time on Ravelry. If you knit and haven't heard of Ravelry, you should check it out. It is the hugest, most fun time sink in the world. I am currently knitting a hat out of Malabrigo Silky Merino yarn. This is my first experience working with the silky merino and I have to say I am totally in love. It is so light, soft, and shiny. The colors are deep and beautiful. I hope that the hat will be warm since I seem to be wearing hats constantly these days in Ohio and I only have one that is really fitting me. The colors are very autumnal.