Thursday, September 28

Verysmallcat, take two.

There is another verysmallcat. This one is smaller and quite young, and is currently "meow"ing its way around the basement at the paper. I want to rescute it and keep it. Thus far I haven't gotten close enough to determine its sex. If it's a girl, I sort of want to name it Mrs. Norris, despite the fact that it's pretty much a black cat, not a tabby.

Generic p.m. pain reliever works wonders. though I woke up with my brain in a fog this morning, the headache was completely and utterly gone. That almost never happens. (It never happens!)

And apparently there is some snafu with the Sock Wars, but it will work out.

Let the wild rumpus begin!

Wednesday, September 27

Eso si que es!

Socks. Let me tell you about socks.

I left work yesterday at about 2:45 for a (very) late lunch and to finish my Socks of Doom. I got a sandwich and took them to the park, where I finished all but trimming the tails. (Forgot the scissors.) So then I went home to get the envelope and the letter I'd printed to my victim ... and was greeted by a new pair of socks. That's right: my Socks of Doom arrived from my assassin just as I was going to send mine out. Oh, the irony!

So, of course, I sat the socks down for a photo shoot, since it's usually a ne'er the twain shall meet situation.

Two Socks of Doom

My feet get the lovely pink socks, which are the. softest. socks. ever. Deliciously soft. My victim's feet get the striped socks, which are themselves quite soft and fuzzy (oh, are they fuzzy!). Why I decided initially that stripes would be good was beyond me, as there were plenty of ends to weave in before I could call them "done". But I'm a fan of the stripes, in the end, and I almost wish I'd striped the entire sock. Almost. (Though now this makes me want to knit Elphaba socks with green and black. Even the roomies think so. And with DK, it wouldn't last forever, which I love.)

Stripes of Doom They're on their way to Florida, and are in a killin' mood. I hope that my victim enjoys them, and that they're not too big. (I kind of forgot how to read patterns for a minute after turning the heel, which resulted in a slightly larger sock than it should have been. I noticed the mistake as I got to the toe decreases, and there was no way I was going to frog a total of 16 1/2 inches to fix it. I do hope they fit!)

Gas has dropped below $2 ... by a penny. There are a couple of places in the state where gas is $1.95. So if'n any of y'all want to move to Iowa, now is the time!

Monday, September 25

Sock Warriors unite!

The verysmallcat is visiting the vet for the snip-snip.

The Socks of Doom for Sock Wars are about 4 inches from the toe decreases (in short, I can probably finish them tonight). I'm working with Paton's Lucette, which has some mohair. They're very soft, and I think they'll turn out really nicely. I did find out that my assassin has sent my socks ... she sent on Saturday! Talk about speed knitting ... she sent me a teaser picture.

They were knit in Debbie Bliss Cashsoft. (Talk about lucky!)

I can't wait to be assassinated!

Thursday, September 21

$2.07 and falling

Let's see. We replaced the kitchen floor this weekend with some fun tiles. (The dog had ripped a hole in the linoleum a while back, and we were slow in fixing it.) Basically, we ripped up the rest of the ruined floor, moved the fridge and stove so we could get under them, and slapped down some peel-n-stick tiles. ("Slapped" is what some of the tiles look like, but it's mostly even.) It took about four hours for the three of us to stick 'em all down. Prep for the four-hour sticking bonanza took a bit longer, though.

And while the fridge was out of its little corner, we painted the wall behind it (after ripping off the old wallpaper). All of the kitchen is now the same color (a sky blue). Huzzah! We even took a little time out to paint the (wooden) screen door to match. It actually looks like a kitchen you wouldn't mind spending time in.

Last night, the roommates and I played a new game: POTC DVD Treasure Hunt. I expected it to be a little lame, but it was more fun than I thought. I kept landing on Rum Runner Island, though, which wasn't the greatest. We may play it again tonight, especially if more "Rum-sets" are involved (our rum-laced answer to the Tequila Sunrise).

Aaaand, what else? Oh, Demetrios is (finally) getting his snip-snip surgery on Monday (hopefully with a little trim-trim on the toenails, as well). I hope he doesn't hate me. He's about six months old now, so it's high time. I don't want him knockin up the girl cat. We don't have any room for more fur!

Gas is at $2.07, and probably still falling. I suspect it will be under $2 here in town in a week or two. Dustro, what's the price sitting at in O!town?

Tuesday, September 19


Avast, me harties, yo ho! It be International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Make merry with a cup o' grog and a touch o' frippery, if ye dare. (Argh, I just spilled a bit o' bubbly grog on me sweater.)

So, ye salty sea dogs ... not sure how to talk like a pirate? Feast yer eyes on this educational training film on pirate speech (via Dave Barry). Ye best prepare t' laugh yerself t' Davy Jones' locker. Arrr!

Eh, and if ye saw last night's Wench Swap on ABC, here be some o' Mad Sally's reflexions. And I be thinkin to purchase some Piratitude fer my own self.

Yeh've been good mates thus far, so I've got a treasure for ye right here.

I also discovered a gem for the upcoming Festival. The alpacas will be as close to our booth as is possible! Eee! (I mean, arrr!)

To the winch, wench!

Thursday, September 14

"Dry" felting

Fyberduck said: that is sooo cool. ... could you elaborate on the dryer method??? we here in OR would looove a dry method that doesn't involve needles

Well, it's not precisely dry, but it's considerably less wet. It was on the directions for the tricorn hat — soak object in water, wring it out a little so it's not sopping wet, toss in dryer (with towel, if desired), check at 15-minute intervals until you're pleased with it. Easy peasy.

I finished the bag last night — the knitting, anyway — during Project Runway. (By the way, what was that BS about bringing Angela and Vincent back for a challenge? I mean, we got to see them auf-ed again in the end, which was rather satisfactory, but why? Was there a point? It would have been more interesting if one of them had won. And anyway, they should have brought back Robert. I wanted to see the Super Fabulous Duo back together one last time.)

So right, the knitting. I three-needled the bottom, then picked up stitches along the side and cast them off as I went along. I think I'll be ripping it out this afternoon, though, because it puckers the side considerably more than I thought. Now, had I knit each side flat separately, or top-bottom-top, it wouldn't be such an issue, as it would be symmetrical puckering. I think this will be too noticable if I felt it like this (which is part of the reason I held off this morning), so it's getting re-done, probably in a whip-stitch fashion. Or something.

Otherwise ... I don't have a lot to say. Yesterday, during our meandering around Barnes & Noble, I picked up a copy of a Scott Cunningham book that I've been wanting to read. I'd heard somewhere that he was a good writer. I'm into the first chapter so far, and I have to agree. Good stuff.

Wednesday, September 13

Hello Yarn

Hello, Skull I've been working on the bag that calico13 sent the yarn for in our swap. It's a free pattern from Hello Yarn. I'm five rows away from the decreases for the bottom of the bag.

I was surprised to see that, once I actually read the pattern, it's knitted flat. I thought it would be knit in the round, but that's a lot of wasted yarn, carrying the skull color over the background so much. Maybe I'll work up a cute little stranded pattern that works with the pirate-y skull motif.

I really can't wait to finish this so I can get it wet and toss it in the dryer — I think that's become my favorite felting method. It doesn't use as much water as the 87 cycles in the washer method, which I like. I haven't tried hand felting, though ... I think I would have to build up some more arm muscle before giving that a go.

Gas is $2.15. That is all.

Tuesday, September 12

Tuesday blahs

I'll huff, and I'll puff, and I'll blow your house down!

The sorting hat says that I belong in Hufflepuff!

Said Hufflepuff, "I'll teach the lot, and treat them just the same."

Hufflepuff students are friendly, fair-minded, modest, and hard-working. A well-known member was Cedric Digory, who represented Hogwarts in the most recent Triwizard Tournament.


Take the most scientific Harry Potter
ever created.

Get Sorted Now!

Did you ever feel that, after you've done something for a long enough time that it should be automatic, suddenly you've forgotten how to do it? I almost couldn't figure out to work the cash register this morning, and I'm having serious issues when I'm taking messages on the phone. I don't think my brain and hands are connected at all to each other today.

Of course, when I woke up, I felt like ... I don't know, week-old lukewarm leftover spicy chili. Completely disgusting and ache-y. (Okay, I'm not sure that chili ever gets aches, but that's the only way I can think to describe it.) It's days like these that I want to call in sick and stay home ... except it's Tuesday and I can't.

Monday, September 11

Guten Tag Hop-Clop

I sent a little something something off to Oregon as a rather belated thanks for sending me some of your stash. The photo is a hint of what I sent. More photos once she receives it.

We watched The Producers this weekend — the new one, with Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane. Can I just say that all three of us nearly died of laughter. All I have to say is Der Guten Tag Hop-Clop rocked my face off enough to persuade me to purchase the soundtrack. (Especially the ballad version at the end — ye gods!)

Oh, and in case any of you haven't experienced the magical healing properties of chocolate ... go have a piece. I feel infinitely better now than when I went home for lunch.

Friday, September 8

I smell like a soggy sheep

... mostly because I finished fulling my tricorn and now it's blocking and drying on my head. I wrote a little song to my hat. Would you like to hear it? Of course you would.
Baa, baa, black sheep,
Thank you for your wool!
Knitting, purling,
Three skeins, fulled.

Thanks, folks. I'm here 'til Thursday.

Anyway, here's what it ended up looking like ...

Tricorn on head
Before a trip through the dryer.

Fulled tricorn
After the dryer.

It is difficult to take good photos of yourself, by the by. (Check out all of the Build-A-Bears in the background — they all belong to my roommates. "You put the life into it!")

Thursday, September 7

Snazzy digs, no?

How 'bout this template?

I have to go home to see about some cable. (And also to unclog a sink and de-nastify a shower.) Perhaps I'll post progress on the tricorn tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 6

Talk Like a Pirate Day is slowly creeping upon us. To celebrate (and because I need a good tricorn hat), I'm going to use Knit Like a Pirate's felted tricorn hat pattern. I just need to find a really big circ and some wool. I'm almost tempted to change my yarn ball swap partner's pattern to this one! I won't but I'm tempted.

Speaking of the swap, I took inventory of all the to-be-wrapped items this morning, to make sure there are enough. (I also had to do a little finishing on one project.) I think I counted 30 some separate pieces, so we'll be good. I only hope there's enough yardage to cover them all! Mua ha ha.

Oh, and $2.31.

Tuesday, September 5

Crikey! Soilent green blackberry

I had some crazy dreams last night. Alas, the only thing I can remember is this:

"I want to try the blackberry soilent!"

I heard yesterday, when I got home from my 1/2 day of work, that Steve Irwin, the Crocodile Hunter, was killed by a stingray yesterday. I was quite surprised because, while I do work for a newspaper, I don't generally hear anything but the local-est of news. Time to tune my Bloglines in to CNN and BBC, methinks.

Goodbye, Steve. I'll miss you.

Gas update: Yesterday the roommates and I were driving toward and through Des Moines. The highest gas price I saw was $2.47, the lowest was $2.30. Here at home, we're sitting at about $2.32.

Monday, September 4

Little mohawks everywhere

Or, We Finally Cut the Grass. It was up to mid-calf, after all. Now it looks like we're about to bale it. What a mess.

The Frog Pirate

This is something I did this weekend. It's going in the yarn ball for calico13, who may or may not see this post. If so, don't worry — this is only a taste of the wonderment you'll unwrap ...

Speaking of crafty, this Friday is my first Craftster-versary. Speaking of crafty, the roommates and I broke out the acrylics and brushes and did up a window in the newly-arranged living room.

The theme was a rainbow (no surprise there). We divided the six colors among five panels thusly: red-orange, orange-yellow, yellow-green, green-blue, blue-purple. I did the first panel and the trinity symbols in the center. The roommates worked on the rest.

Stained glass

That's the view from the inside this morning, without lights on. It looks very nice at night from the outside, with light shining through. Very colorful and festive. The best part is that it's not permanent, so when we're tired of it in a month, we can scrub it off and start anew. But first we're going to paint the kitchen windows, and the front door. We're thinking Harry Potter-themed crests — each house gets its own window, and the Hogwarts crest itself gets the front door.

ETA: It seems that someone in our (other) office is quitting this week, which means I may get a raise(!) or more hours(!) soon. I hope I don't have to learn to do the books ...

Friday, September 1


My theory of gas being down to 99¢ was wrong. It has settled at about $2.37 for the past couple of days — and here my dad was saying, "Oh, get gas today! It's going up to $2.45 later!" Boy who cried wolf, anyone? He's funny.

I got to visit a bed and breakfast today that just opened. It was very pleasant, and the family that runs it is very fun. Also, her mother is hilarious. She was telling me a small story about why she can't try on clothes at the store anymore — she breaks out! I think she referred to herself as one big rash. What a funny woman.

I've been getting down with my crochet self lately. I found a Celtic pentacle posted on Craftster, and decided to make one of my own. Photo is here. I'm rather pleased with it, since my crochet skills are pretty much rudimentary.

I got my yarn yesterday for the Magic Yarn Ball Swap. I'm going to wrap it tonight.

Here's a new picture of Demetrios ...

I am going to climb this mountain!