ellenscult: (Default)
If you follow my twitter at all, you might possibly have noticed that I'm attempting to watch all of the Stanley Cup playoff games (or at least have them on in the background while I do other things). If you are unaware of the joy that is ice hockey (closest thing to quidditch you'll ever see on the ground, honestly, joy to watch), the NHL consists of 30 teams (31 next year) which play 82 games through the regular season. The top 16 teams (you'd have to look up about Eastern and Western Conferences and first and second wild card entries) end up in the Stanley Cup playoffs. Each playoff series consists of the teams playing a best-of-7-games format against 1 opposing team. The first round also serves as the semi-finals of the Western or Eastern Conference finals; the second round is the quarter-finals and the third round is the finals. The best team of the Eastern Conference then plays the best team of the Western conference in a best-of-7 series to determine who wins the Stanley Cup.

You may be able to tell from this that the NHL season is pretty much the most demanding (by far) of all professional sports, and the Stanley Cup is the toughest trophy to win. And it's played on ice. At top speed. Sometimes with blood and fights and the threat of serious injury. And all the players are armed with sticks and skates (knives on their shoes. Seriously. Football - of whatever form you prefer - is incredibly wussy compared to KNIVES ON SHOES. Unless it's Australian Rules football. Which is just insane, and the referees start fights and look like butchers, and the players are part MMA fighters, part gymnasts on speed).

So. As of this afternoon, 40 games have been played in round 1. 6 teams are through to the second round, with 4 teams competing for the last 2 spots. I am a Pittsburgh Penguins fan, because they're awesome and lovely and like dogs and they're quite simply the best team out there with the best players in the world, who are also some of the nicest guys you'll find in pro sports. (Yeah, I read a hockey romance, started following the Penguins, then they won the Stanley Cup, so now I have a subscription to NHL tv and spend far too much time cheering them on.) I've watched 35 games (watching my 36th at the mo) and I use the time (surprise) to do a little crafting.

So here's my Stanley Cup Playoffs Round 1 blanket, which is done bar a couple of loose ends needing sewn in. (Dante's in the background, on one of the many dog beds.)
Crocheted blanket in pink and blue stripes.

Next up: Stanley Cup Playoffs Round 2 legwarmers. By request from my sister's mum.
ellenscult: (perky)
After talking with my counsellor on Tuesday, I popped into the Antrim Forum to see what classes they had, and on Wednesday morning I went to Pilates for the first time ever. Ahahahaha! It is brutal! In a very non-brutal way, but today my everything aches. When I think about all the sword fighting, glima, rock climbing, cycling, swimming etc I've done and how very unfit and unbendy I am now, the comparison makes me feel, well, unfit and unbendy. Gah! So yeah, I'll go back next week, provided I'm not a) dead or dismembered or b) having a bad ME day. Fingers crossed, eh?

I'm feeling quite chipper at the moment: financially, things aren't entirely dire (hurrah); DH is coming up on the end of week 11 of his new job (but eye surgery next week, eep); I haven't had to take Planck to the vets for a few weeks (but I need to get him another hip x-ray, his bad hip is getting worse); the other dogs are fit and well (touch wood); family is all okay (to the best of my knowledge, and my nephew starts school a week on Friday, wow); I've even hoovered the house. Well, downstairs, and I hoovered upstairs at the end of last week, so it's still okay for now.

So yeah, no major disasters! Have some crafty photos instead:

Photos )

Also a book recommendation, also from my wonderful counsellor: Reinventing Your Life by Jeffrey E. Young, PhD., and Janet S. Klosko, PhD. So yeah, I'll be getting that. Oh, and I read Neurotribes by Steve Silberman, which is a fantastic read - hugely informative, sometimes difficult, sometimes hugely entertaining, but always very thought-provoking. I think my favourite bit, for reasons which will be blatantly obvious to anyone who knows me personally and to anyone who's read anything else at all in this blog, is this, about the expanded criteria for diagnosis:

A nonspeaking boy of six who rocked in a corner all day would fit the bill, as would a woman in her late twenties who reflexively averted her eyes when speaking and calmed herself while knitting while inwardly fancying herself the real-life equivalent of Sarah Jane Smith on Doctor Who.

Replace 'late twenties' with 'early forties', and 'Sarah Jane Smith' with 'Ace', and yeah, that's absolutely me! It made me giggle.

So yeah, that's me this week. I'm going to go back to crocheting another cute cat (making a good start on those family Christmas presents) and wait for the washing machine repairman (repairperson? probably a bloke, though) to turn up (13:00-15:00 allegedly). Have yourselves a great week and welcome to September!
ellenscult: (boats)
Just a quick post to show off a few things I've made recently/am making at the mo:

Photos )

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