Just a little rant about shopping

Less inspired this time around

Last night I had a great post on the go about Ravelry and the re-energization of my knitting and my new coat and well, my laptop ate it.  Fuck.  There were photos, but the camera battery died.  Double fuck.

I'm finding my beloved Dell is being a tad weird lately.  It runs slow.  It always sounds like things are running in the background and sucking up bandwidth.  Like my house it probably need a big clean to clear out clutter, but unlike my house, I have no idea how to clean a computer except to delete files, and I'm actually quite good at that.  Though I suppose I could start with a clearing of temporary internet files and cookies and a good defrag.  Then see what happens.

So back to to Ravelry.  I love Ravelry.  The "must-be-organized" part of me loves the ability to keep track of stuff (though I confess I have not done enough of that--see the bit above about my house and clutter--the battle continues) and the "I want to knit everything" part of me loves to browse and see what's up with other Knitters.  My queue is outrageously long, but since most of it is from stash I see it as a way to connect my wants with my resources.  And while I doubt someone from the brains of Ravelry will come and smack me for not knitting everything in my queue, they are certainly welcome to come to Toronto for a visit because they're fun people.  Come for Drunken Knitters!

I did find a coat, well two, the one that I really love which is totally impractical and doesn't go with my Earth Stripe Wrap and the one that I also love which is more practical and does go with the wrap and a lot of my other winter handknit accessories.  The two I chose from photos were bad.  The grey one looked awful on me and the plaid one closed only with the toggles--not good for Canadian winters (even wimpy Toronto ones).

Here's the one that's going back.  Note to self: don't take fashion advice from an 8 year old.  Yes, the jacket looks great on me.  But my ass will be frozen solid if I try to wear this in January.


Here's the one I'm pretty sure I'm keeping.  Nice, classic, slimming, chocolate brown (my favourite colour--more wearable for me than black and still neutral) and ass-covering.


But is it warm enough?  I'm not totally convinced.  The last three years I've worn a puffer down coat and I was toasty.  I know many of you don't think Toronto is cold, but after 25 years in Thunder Bay which is COLD, I think Toronto has a damp dankness to it in winter that keeps me colder than -40c.  And it's windy.  So I'm still on the fence about a not-very-expensive wool coat.  I don't think they line them anymore with a chamois or extra layers of wool or thinsolate.  Or at least this RW version, doesn't seem like it does.

Mom is coming for a visit and Mom's know about this stuff.  So the coat is on the fence for now.  Or maybe I'll keep it and get a puffer too (my old one is toast).   I love down coats, but find they're not so good for the accessorizing.  Sheesh, this knitting thing is making me go for style over warmth like I did as a teenager (imagine me with shoes and no socks in -20c--stoopid).

And maybe I'll extricate those photos of knitting from my camera tonight.  If I remembered to charge my battery.  I've finally hit my stride with work and kids and my evenings are less crazy.  It is great to work a nice groove into the couch surrounded by yarn.


so who are you on ravelry? I'll track you down. I'm lovin' it, too, though it's a little time intensive in the beginning, getting all the photos up (I hadn't used flickr before) and projects summarized.

The brown coat is lovely and will look great with Earth Stripe. As for the warmth-factor, I can't help you there. When the temperature drops below 60F, I won't go out in anything less than a down sleeping bag.

I vote for the brown one, but if you're still looking for coat ideas, you could visit Lorne's (at Spadina & Adelaide -- they don't seem to have their own website):


I went there a couple of years ago and got a coat that I absolutely love, and I'll probably go back there for my next one.

Hmmm... the coat LOOKS great, but I don't think it will be warm enough. I'd buy a down coat, too.

I live in Chicago, and a wool coat is not warm enough to get you through the winter here (unless you're one of those people who is always driving and just runs from the office to the car to the groc store into the heated garage).

The wool coats with Thinsulate lining (usually an extra fee at J Crew and the like) are much warmer and are good for most days. The wool ones with regular lining -- not warm enough at all.

You too?

When I was in HS, I would wear sneakers (or sandals), shorts and a t-shirt and walk all over town. I developed pit stops to warm up a bit before continuing. Not very smart, but definitely obstinate.

Norma made me buy a puffer waist-length jacket, which is SO warm I can't believe it. NO way that my cute wool coats are as warm.

The other thing with the brown coat, cute as it is, is that it is being shown on the model quite fitted. So fitted, in fact, that I doubt a warm sweater can be squeezed underneath. I have a similar cute wool coat that only a thin sweater will fit underneath, limiting its utility in the dead freezing ass-cold of winter.

I lived in T.O. for 4 years 2 of which were "100 year winters" quoth my T.O. native friends. I totally agree with the damp + wind off the lake + cold = need maximum coat! So I'd vote for the toasty down AND the 8 year old's suggestion.. that red coat ROCKS! not too helpful, I know, but you'll grin every time you wear it...

Computer advice.

Get spybot. It's free. Run it. It'll clean up all the extra spycrap that runs in the background and tracks your keystrokes and generally annoys you.

I love the second coat, but I'm not convinced it's warm enough either. And I totally believe you that Toronto is cold, btw.

Wait for the after christmas sales at Fairweather for a puffy. You'll pick one up for a song. A woman I worked with who did outreach downtown (all day outside) got a great one last winter for $79 and it was down, and calf-length and cute/fitted!

Get some kind of spyware scanner. I think Norton has one. Zone Alarm has one. I use that one. It's not free, I got it with the firewall.
The coat thing bugs me too. I live in Kingston and we hit -20 on a regular basis here. that means warm sweater, wool coat,scarf ont he outside, hat, hood up (I only buy coats with hoods) another scarf on the outsid AND a big warm shawl on top of it all to block drafts....This year I'm thinking I'm gonna knit up legwarmers...

Love the brown coat, but keep the puffer for the days when the wind is off the lake. To hell with looks when it's f-ing freezing, I say.
The crack-silk haze will apologize to the fashion police under any circumstances.

I'm kinda in love with the red coat, who makes it? I live in Maine, and it doesn't get truly, numbingly cold here until January, so I get plenty of wear out of wool coats. I just buy them a little big and add layers as necessary. How much room is under that brown coat? Think you could get away with a fleece layer (or two)?

Personally I think a wool coat is nice and warm. Just make sure you've got enough room in it that you can get an extra sweater on for the -21 days.

(the wind tunnels created by the buildings downtown TO don't help either)

If your running windows XP maybe some of the stuff in this article might help - http://askbobrankin.com/make_windows_xp_run_faster.html

More computer advice:
My Dell laptop overheats. Always has. Had to get the motherboard replaced and a new power supply. But it was worth it, IMO. Have you tried using one of those spray cans of air, and spritzing the fan(s) on the bottom? Also, I ALWAYS put it on a separate fan on a desk. Seems to help.

i love love love the red coat. love it! :) (but yes it would be a 'fall coat' for me, not a winter one)

I ran across your blog while surfing here at Dell headquarters, and decided to drop a note.

If your system is having performance problems, I would say your friend's suggestion of running a spyware scanner is a good one. I would suggest the following actions:

1. Download and run a spyware scanner. I'd suggest Adaware, Spybot, or if you already have it, Windows Defender

2. Update your virus definitions for your anti-virus program and run a full system scan.

3. Make sure your copy of Windows is fully patched, and that Windows Update is configured to auto-update.

4. Remove any programs you no longer use, and for those you do use, make sure that they are only configured to auto-start with Windows if absolutely necessary. IM programs are notorious for this. Many other programs are configured to automatically run when Windows is booted by default. Do you have a lot of icons in the system tray by your clock? BAD sign...

Dell Customer Advocate

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