Tuesday, November 28, 2006

What's in a name?

It's time to clear something up. Something I've noticed for a long time, but just never cared to do anything about until now. Ever since I began to use the internet back in... oh.... '93, I've used the name ErLeCa as my internet identity. It's the first two letters of my first, middle and last name. Not very clever or interesting, but it worked for me. Ever since I started blogging, I've noticed this must be somewhat confusing. Countless times I've been refered to as 'Erica' instead of Erin because just glancing at my internet name gives the impression that Erica's my name. So I've decided to change my blogger name to Erin. Less confusion... and besides... I like my name...

Updated to add: I'm not upset or offended by anyone who may have mistaken my name, it's only a post to clarify.

Monday, November 27, 2006

McGyver and some kitty love...

Thanksgiving was nice, very quite which was great. Yes, I realize Thanksgiving was five days ago, but for a girl with no internet access, oh wait, let me rephrase that, with dial-up internet access, I was not about to blog while I was at my parent's house.

It was very relaxing. My family and I played dominos and I go to spend a lot of time knitting. Dominos and knitting... It's official... I am now an 80 year old woman trapped in a 25 year old's body. Just throw in a walker and old McGyver episodes and I'll be all set *sigh* oh well.

So I finished these:I also started a pair of socks for my dad. Just a simple pair of black socks made out of KnitPicks Gloss. In fact, I finished one of them. The beauty of the whole thing is my dad was there the whole time. I think when it comes to knitting he's not very curious so I can get away with knitting his Christmas present right in front of him. Picture coming as soon as I have some good light. Taking a picture of black socks is tricky!

So someone asked me why I haven't had pictures of Ludo, my cat, up recently. I don't really have a good answer to that. It's not for lack of pictures. I have some great ones. Like this:If you look close enough you can see my roommate knitting on the couch behind him. Did I mention I taught my roommate how to knit? I'm so proud!

Then there's this oneThat's Ludo and my roommate's cat Hemi. She got Hemi right before I left for the summer so I didn't get to know him until after I got back, but Ludo had all summer to get friendly... obviously. There's a lot of kitty love going on right there.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Loxodonta africana among other things...

It's been over a week since I last posted and I have no new knitting to show you. Life has been consumed with work, homework and studying. My mammology professor is making us memorize species names, families and orders of a whole hell of a lot of mammals. Did you know that that the duck-billed platypus comes from the family Ornithorhynchidae or that the scientific name of the chimpanzee is Pan troglodytes? Yeah, neither did I, but now I do.

I mentioned a while ago that there was a trip to the Toronto Zoo planned didn't I? Well we went. Aside from the rain (the cold, chill-you-to-your-bones rain) it was a good trip. We didn't get to tour around the zoo because we had limited time. What we did end up doing was watching a training session with the African elephants (Loxodonta africana). It was interesting to see these huge animals do things like open their mouths and hold them open so the keepers could inspect their teeth. They'd hold them open until the keeper gave the command indicating it could stop.You can see in this picture that the keepers work under protected contact which means no keeper physically goes in with an elephant. Did you know most cases where keepers have been seriously injured or killed have involved elephants?

After the training, we watched a presentation and spoke with a keeper and a supervisor on lots of different issues related to being zookeepers. It was definitely educational.

As for the rest of the time there (we only had about an hour to see things which certainly isn't enough time when you're at the Toronto Zoo) we made the most of it. And when I said "made the most of it" I meant fooled around in some of their more 'child friendly' exhibits. We had fun. I tell ya, if there's one thing I love about this program it's the people and how much fun we have.

In a totally unrelated topic, I'm in a club at school called the ZEW Club (Zoo and Exotic Wildlife Club) and we were doing this fundraiser that all the clubs in school participate in. It's were you raffle off tickets for whatever prizes the school is offering that year and the club gets to keep the proceeds. I tried selling tickets, I didn't try hard, but I tried. When I didn't end up selling any, I just bought a few for myself. I bought a total of 5 tickets. That's it. And guess what? I won! There were four prizes, an iPod Video, an iPod Nano and two iPod Shuffles. I won one of the shuffles! This thing has 1GB of memory in such a tiny little device. Don't believe me? Just look at how small this thing is:
I'm totally afraid I'm going to lose it!

So Thanksgiving is coming up. I have just a few days off since I still have to work, but let me tell you, I'm definitely going to be taking advantage of the time. I plan to knit... a lot. We'll see if I actually do or not because I have school projects that need finishing before the end of the semester which is only... oh... three (school) weeks away! Yikes!

Thursday, November 09, 2006

A bit of introspection never hurt anybody

I've been feeling somewhat disconnected with the blogging world recently. I think it has a lot to do with me trying to find my place here (and by here, I mean where I'm living at the moment) After the breakup I was feeling a bit lost. Lost in terms of where I am and where I'm going.

And then it hit me. For the last few years there has been this subtle (and at times, not so subtle) message as to what I need to do with my life. I've been ignoring it because it scares me, but after this last upheaval, it's staring me right in the face and I can't look away.

I need to go somewhere completely new and I need to do it on my own. Once I'm there I need to make a life for myself. The happiest I ever remember being was when I was on my own with no one to rely on but myself and with no one to worry about but me. I've been running away from that sort of life ever since because apparently I have it in my head that I'd be happier being with someone. That has not turned out to be the case.

So I've decided to apply to zoos all over the country. Wherever I'm accepted, I'm going to go.

As for the semester I still have left in school, I'm going to make the most of it, and the most of being here. In the spirit of that, I've started a knitting group. A stitch and bitch of my very own. It started with some word of mouth to see who'd be interested and the response was somewhat overwhelming. Our first meeting was on Tuesday and I ended up teaching two people to knit (my plans to spread knitting love are going along swimmingly) There was a total of four of us there. More plan on being there next week!

I don't know why I never started one before now. I suppose all my thoughts were wrapped up in a relationship I thought was going somewhere and I didn't want to get too attatched to this place knowing I'd be leaving. I don't know what made me think that because I still plan on leaving but why not make my time here at the very least bearable and maybe even fun? And perhaps leave something behind that other people can enjoy?

Anyway, enough with the deep thoughts. If you've stayed with me through all this reading, I commend you. And you get a little reward. I finished one of the socks I'm making for my grandmother.I can't even begin to tell you how much I love this sock and how perfectly it fits.... me. I'm hoping my grandmom's feet are similar enough to mine that they'll fit. There's still some room to give so I think it'll be fine. And I have to admit I totally covet this sock and want to keep it, but I can't. It was made for Grandma, it's going to Grandma!

Friday, November 03, 2006

November, I'm so glad you're here.

I can, without a doubt, be said that October was the worst month this year for me. Aside from Rhinebeck, nothing good happened. That is why I welcome November with wide open arms. And so far, November has been great.

Laurie sent me a little care package:It's some cross stitch patterns and some chocolate (If I didn't know better I'd think that everyone was trying to fatten me up!) Thank you, Laurie, I really appreciate them!

My mom and Jill came up to visit me on Wednesday and for no reason at all Jill gave me a gift. Some very cute picture frames.Gotta love the jungle theme! She also gave me some aromatheraphy things from Bath and Body Works. Mmmmm. Thank you Jill!

I'm telling you, everyone has been so supportive. It's overwhelming and I'm so grateful. I'm not sure I would have made it through October with out you!

School has been very crazy. We just found out we'll be going to the Toronto Zoo in two weeks and I can not tell you how excited I am to go! As far as the zoo on the homefront goes, I've done some really cool things this week. The highlight being catching up the birds of prey to have them weighed.This is me and our American Kestrel, Odin. Boy did he make some noise when I tried to get him, but he calmed right down once he realized I wasn't trying to hurt him. Catching the birds was by far, the most exciting and fun thing I've done this year.

As for the knitting. Well, I may not have mentioned this, but I finally caved and bought myself some Knitpicks Options needles. Oh how I love them. They arrived on Wednesday and you'd better believe I already have a project going on them. Love, love, love these needles. This lace thing I'm doing is going so fast now that I have needles pointy enough to handle it! Sorry this is such a brief update. Hopefully things will calm down enough so I can write a proper post.