Saturday, April 09, 2005

Spring has Sprung!

YAY! Spring is here.... And I think here in Northeast Iowa we've gotten past the time where we could still get a freak snow storm of multiple inches that hangs around for months.... Not saying it CAN'T happen, just saying the odds that it won't get better and better every day.

After the absolute week from HADES my wonderful "quasi-boyfriend" did several outstanding things. One was introduce me to a new website of gorgeous yarn. Then last night he took me to a baseball game! Granted they are associated with the Angels but I love baseball and they are a lot closer for afterwork games or times when you want to take in a game without taking too much time out of your life/ making it a huge event. There was beer and polish sausage. And the week was looking better. Oh yeah and the Kernels killed the Cougars.... 11-0.

Prior to the game, when I first got home from the civic-duty-that-is-threatening-my-sanity, I had a package waiting for me. The shoes I had ordered when Nathan and I went to the paddlesport expo in Madison, WI a couple weeks ago. Seriously comfy... I think I'm in love. I know I know I need shoes like I need a hole in the head but these are going to be replacing my former "happy shoes" that are, after a good number of years of wear, are not as happy as they once were. They still have New York State dirt in them from (oh wow, has it really been that long) 6 years ago. And truth be told they were never the most supportive of shoes.... Sadly I can no longer "just deal" with unsupportive shoes for any length of time. Anyhoo... If you are in search of some funky comfy shoes I highly recommend checking out this environmentally and socially conscious company.

Then today my lovely and wonderful co-worker and friend (and the first person I taught to knit), Cari of the comments, came to visit me. We showed each other various UFO's and I gave her the stuff from Erin and I for Tegan as well as some yarn from my stash and from the stuff that Erin brought out. Oh yeah I got some yarn from her too. :) She has the most adorable pattern book for little ones and she's getting ready to attempt her first sweater (you can do it, Cari). We went to the LYS for some really awesome yarn for another sweater she is going to be making for a little one (pattern also from the same book... I think it's Quick Knits for Kids but don't hold me to that). Cari took me out to lunch and I brought back half a Turkey Ruben that is currently calling to me from it's place in the fridge (Thanks Cari... Betcha didn't know you were taking care of lunch and dinner for me huh?). Cari was also kind enough to take a pair of Birkenstocks off my hands. See... I had always wanted a pair of Birks... Both Cari and Nathan swear by them. So a couple years ago (maybe it was last year... I'm not sure but it's not important) I finally got up the gusto to purchase a pair. I tried them on in the store and per the translation from European sizes got the same size I get in all other shoes (a 6). I was warned to break them in by wearing them a few times with socks first, which I did faithfully. I'll be damned but no matter what I did those shoes just weren't comfortable for me. There is a little "support ridge" in the footbed that goes between your toes and the ball of your foot, this is apparently one of the hallmarks of these shoes. Well my feet must be goofy because that little ridge hit my right big toe in just the wrong way and would cause my big toe to go numb. Yup, that's right, the toe the maintains the whole balance thing... So numb you could have removed it and I would have been none the wiser. By this point I had had the shoes for too long to return them and Erin had already said that Birks didn't fit her right either so giving them to her was out of the picture. I had seriously contemplated contacting Stephanie, who loves her Birks, to see what her size (hey she's roughly the same height has Erin and I... you know, short, so I thought...) was so they weren't just going to waste in my closet. But then.... Several people had mentioned that perhaps the shoes were just too big for me and therefore causing my foot not to line up correctly with the footbeds. I couldn't test this theory forever because the size I had bought was apparently the smallest size any local retailer carried. The other day I stopped into Payless and noticed that they now carry a type of shoe called a Tula which is licensed by Birkenstock.... They had little kids sized 4 1/2 which I tried on for giggles... They fit like a glove. So there may be hope... BUT all this taught me that the conversion chart from European Sizes to US Sizes is crap AND that the Birk's I own(ed) would probably fit Cari... And they did and the shoes and Cari are now going to live happily ever after. WOOHOO!!!!

Cari and I also had the luck of getting to see J.B. of WideSpread Panic sing the National Anthem at today's Chicago Cubs game while at lunch. It was funny I was just mentioning it because there was baseball on TV but not the Cubs game... Then mere moments pass and the waitress changes all the TV to the game just in time for the National Anthem. It was pretty cool... And excellent timing. Panic is in the middle (well tonight is the last night of a three night stint) of their shows at the Chicago Theatre after taking 2004 off from touring (they're allowed they had been on tour for 17 years pretty much straight prior to that). As you might guess their shows sold out pretty fast and given the general craziness that has been around here Nathan and I wouldn't have been able to make it so it was really great to catch part of J.B. on the toob. Especially because Northeast Iowa is quite possibly the only place on the planet where WGN is not a local station.

I hope you are all enjoying (and having) BEA-U-TI-FUL spring weather (I'm airing out the apartment... after a whole winter with baseboard... read: dusty... heat, it's a grand thing). That sandwich is really starting to get obnoxious with the yelling so I think I'll go eat it and the settle down for a long evening's knit. I'll update y'all on the progress tomorrow.

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