#fivethingsFriday – late AF edition

How is it 10:00 PM already?! I got out of work at 2 and have accomplished very little, aside from a nap, making dinner, and doing some housecleaning. I had intended to do this as a video again, but at this time of night…let’s just say I have my “no” face on.

This week’s five things are much more random than last week’s, but here we go.

  • I’m binding off my wedding shawl! Picot binding looks pretty, but it takes a dog’s age to finish. Based on how long it took me to finish the small section I’ve completed, I have another…oh…five hours of binding off ahead of me.

There are 389 stitches on the needle. For this picot bind-off, you CO 2 and bind off 4. Yeah. It’s gonna take a while.

  • I’m also working on my Ravenclaw socks! I’m ready to put the heel on sock #2. The nine-inch ChiaoGoo circs I bought (US 1 and US 0; I’m using the 1 for the socks) are pretty fabulous. I have tiny little hands so I don’t get the cramping that many knitters have complained about, and based on my Ravelry notes, they cut 2 days off my knitting time on the foot. The only downside I can see so far is that it’s difficult to try on the sock to assess fit on the nine-inch circs, so if I’m making something where I’m concerned about the fit, it’ll probably be best to start on Magic Loop.
  • I’ve been slacking off blogging about riding, but my lessons have been going pretty well! Still struggling with the diagonals, but my canter is getting worlds better. I have a lesson tomorrow, so I’ll try to do a post maybe tomorrow evening or Sunday, but in the meantime, isn’t Cinnamon the best looking horse (with the most pissed off face) you’ve ever seen?

Things I could eat with a spoon: this horse. Sweetface.

  • This week I learned that I’m not going to be able to cook properly until after my bridal shower (which is apparently in October). First it was the cauliflower/food processor disaster. This week, I tried to make garlic cloud bread, but I couldn’t get the egg whites beaten enough to hold peaks. It took me half an hour to get them beaten as well as I did with just a fork. It ended up being runnier than it should have, but it baked up enough to be edible. Of course, I realized after I’d already eaten dinner and cleaned up that we actually own a whisk and that might have been helpful. Looking forward to hopefully receiving a few kitchen tools (like a chopper and a hand beater) at my shower so I can cook like an adult.
  • Speaking of wedding things, we’re getting close – almost five months out, or as my wedding registry page puts it, 161 days to go. I’m suddenly realizing all the little things I haven’t been bothered to worry about. I need to decide if I’m going Spanx or no Spanx and decided on shoes so I can schedule a dress fitting. We need to order wedding bands. We need to figure out what suits the guys are wearing. So many decisions!

#firstbootproblems

Equestrian confession: I have never owned a pair of tall boots. I’ve never needed them. Up until the last three months, I never thought I would need them because I didn’t want to show.

However, I do need new boots in some fashion. My paddock boots are old and beat up, and the suede half chaps I bought last year are getting there as well. When I told my trainer that I was in the market for new boots, she suggested I get tall boots because they’d last longer than my half chaps and I could show in them, since I’ve now decided that’s a thing I want to try. So on Saturday, I went boot shopping.

On the recommendation of my trainer and also general good sense because their return policy is awesome, I went to Dover. I explained to the lovely and helpful salesgirl that I had ridiculously muscular calves and thought I might be a tough fit, that I knew nothing about tall boots, and that I’d like something in the $200-$250 range that was appropriate for schooling-to-show. The girl gave my legs the once-over and said, “You should be fine to fit. We’ll try a regular medium calf.”

You should know where this is going by now.

Several pairs of boots (and several skin-pinches) later, we had only found one pair of boots that even remotely fit my leg properly. It’s what the girl called a “sock style” boot, meaning that the leather was incredibly soft and hugs the leg like a second skin. They were actually super comfortable, except for the fact that they were a dress boot (rather than a field boot) and I couldn’t really bend my ankle. The salesgirl swore the boots would stretch and allow my ankle to bend, but she also told me that the stock-style boots don’t have a break-in period, and those two things seemed contradictory. The other issue is that the leather of the boot was so soft that I really think that the fit of the boot wouldn’t be maintained past a few months; once it broke in properly, the boots would probably drop and bag, just like my regular “going-out” boots that I wear to work.

You can just tell these will sag after a few good rides. Also you can see all the “fallen soldier” boots behind me that just didn’t fit.
Bagging was the issue in general: because my ankles are so slender (8 inches in diameter) compared to my calves (15.75 inches standing, 16.25 sitting), what fits me in one place logically doesn’t fit me in the other. The girl at Dover told me I’d probably need a custom boot, which, with wedding payments and general living, isn’t a possibility right now, especially when I don’t even know if I’ll like showing. We tried a leather half-chap with a zip-up paddock boot, but I had the problem again with the bagging in the ankle.

My trainer seems less concerned about my boot-shopping woes than I am. She says to go boot shopping with her next time, and we’ll find something – boot or half-chap – that works. Right now, we’re both on the same page: lace-up paddock boots (because I’ll get a better fit and more mobility through my ankle) and a decent leather half-chap are probably the way to go.

The hunt continues.