Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Your result for The Director Who Films Your Life Test...

Woody Allen

Your film will be 63% romantic, 42% comedy, 24% complex plot, and a $ 27 million budget.

Thanks, Michelle! This made me smile. (But the Annie Hall*, not Scoop, Woody Allen!)

* Which won the Academy Award for Best Picture in the year of my birth.
On Sunday I headed to Philly to participate in the 2008 LiveStrong Challenge.

I was a little intimidated by all the people, but it was inspiring at the same time.

Yes, Lance Armstrong was actually there.

Not the most flattering picture of myself, but I do seem to be glowing with a certain sense of accomplishment, no? In the photo with me are my cousins: Justin, on the left, cancer survivor and his brother, Jon, on the right. I must say, we do look rather pleased with ourselves. It was an incredible day.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

I was on Wall Street this week, enjoying the seemingly, never-ending hospitality of friends.

I can't believe I've never been here.

My neighbors.

A very good read.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I spent last week in Astoria, Queens, with a side trip to Coney Island.

Sparrow, Astoria

Coney Island

Keyspan Park

Friday, August 15, 2008

The Olympics are half way over today and I'm about half way from finishing my Ravelympics entry. According to my records, which are vague, at best, I started it in January of 2006. I am, obviously, participating in WIP Wrestling. I can hardly believe that I've managed to finish so much of it in so little time. When I started the chart (2 years ago!) it seemed like such an insurmountable task. And now the chart is finished and I only have to knit the waistband, sleeves and collar. Amazing.

This is a new concept for me. Setting a goal and acheiving it. It's something, well, Olympian. I've always been a good one for excuses. Excuses not to try something. Excuses not to go somewhere. Excuses not to call someone. I've finally (FINALLY) learned that if you never try, you can never succeed. Such a simple idea.

I ran my first 5K last weekend and I finished it. That was my only goal - just finish. Now I'm in another race next weekend. It seems to get easier and easier to set goals for myself. Knit this sweater. Run this race. Live my life.

I'm learning some really tough lessons this summer. About how easy it is to take life for granted. How easy it is for the people in it to suddenly disappear. A long time love gone. A dear friend dead. An old friend moved away.

I said goodbye to yet another special person in my life last night. Lindsay was my roommate the semester I spent in Paris in 1998. It was the year I discovered that I had been hiding who I was for a long time and these 5 brilliant, hillarious, beautiful girls (ahem, women) made me their friend and showed me a life I could have. Lindsay, Carrie, Lynn, Molly and Anja. Thank you.

By some gift of Fate, three of them ended up in NYC with me. (I spent 9/11 on Lindsay's couch, stranded in the city that awful day.) We've had dinners and brunches and birthdays, but not enough. You're always busy, in love, tired, full of excuses and there's always next time. But then one day, there is no next time.

Last night, standing in the wet night, sharing one last ciagrette, Lindsay and I reminisced and said goodbye. 1998 was also the year that I met Peter. Now, 10 years later, a very large chapter of my life comes to an end. Peter is gone, Lindsay is gone, Carrie is soon to be gone (to NJ, so not to far). And my life is changed. And a great is lesson learned.

Take nothing for granted. Don't make excuses. Love everyone the best you possibly can. Don't depend on there being a next time. Don't make excuses. Don't be afraid.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Fiona Wrap Jacket, detail

Aw, man. You guys have been great! I mean, just wonderful. Thank you, thank you, thank you for all of your kind words and encouragement. I never thought, two years ago, when I started this blog, that I would make so many friends through it. I think that's what everyone says at one point or another on their blog, but it's true! How is it possible that there are so many amazing people out there doing this? This, being blogging or knitting or whatever. How have you all found me?

Well, thank you. I'm blushing. I cannot believe that there are so many people out there that are so kind to me. I'm still feeling kind of sad and alone and lost, but I have you all to hoist me up and remind me that I have a very full and wonderful life that is very much my own.

So, here is the knitting I promised you.

The Fiona Wrap Jacket, a.k.a The Point's August Pattern of the Month.

I could hardly believe, during the oppressive heat of July, that I was knitting such a garment. But the last couple of days, with the hint of a chill in the air during the late evenings, Fall doesn't seem so far away, and the thought of getting started on some cooler weather knits isn't so ludicrous.

You can get all of the details for this on Ravelry. I will tell you, however, that this is ridiulously easy to knit. It's one piece, starting from the back edge and separating for the two fronts to be worked, well, separately. I held two strands of Jo Sharp Alpaca Silk Georgette together to get a very pleasing tweed effect and a knitted gauge of about 4 stitches to one inch.

I was really sad to send this one off to The Point, but I'm considering knitting another one for myself out of some mohair that I've been holding onto for some time. That would be really warm and super lightweight. It would be equally lovely knit out of a single strand of some bulky Malabrigo or Manos, so that the stockinette can show off the lovely hand-dyed yarn. But I do go on....

P.S. The 5K is this weekend!!! Wish me luck!!! And a super big THANK YOU to those of you who donated (you know who you are) and everyone who offerred words of encourgament! Thanks again. (Can I say thank you enough? Nope.)

P.P.S. I even signed up for another run in two weeks. The Livestrong Challenge in Philly which I'll be running with my cousin.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Boy, I have some nerve.

Here I am, digging out after a month of chaos. I was lucky that you didn't desert me completely and, in return, I promised you some knitting.

Instead, I'm coming to you with my hand out. That's right. I'm gonna ask for a favor.

When I moved back to NJ, one month ago, my family was in the midst of dealing with their own troubles. A very dear friend had been fighting a losing battle against pancreatic cancer. At a loss for a way to help, my mother organized a team to participate in the Purple Stride Island Run. It's organized by the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, which you can read about here.

I, in an attempt to keep busy, decided to run the 5K portion of the race. Those of you who know me well enough, know that this was quite a decision. I'm not exactly a runner. Or a jogger, for that matter.

And in the month that I've been home, we've lost our friend. He had an amazing life that ended too soon and an amazing family that didn't deserve to have him taken away so early.

The people that have agreed to participate in the run/walk and the money that we've raised to far are both testaments to how much he was loved. I've decided (another decision!) to step up my game and not only run the race, but to try to raise a bit of money as well.

I don't expect much. I'm just asking for support. Now that support can come in the form of a "Way to go!" in my comment section, or in the form of $1 added to my team. I just kind of wanted to put it out there in the blogisphere that I was doing this thing and who it was for and to ask for your collective good thoughts for myself (during the run) and for his family (who need it more than I do.)

That's all. Thanks.