Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Stop and Start

I have very bad --- congenitally bad --- knees.  They go stiff, cause me some discomfort, rather regularly.  Once in a long while, however, they will catch when a kneecap gets popped a little bit out of position.  I just buckle when it happens, and am helpless until everything slips back into place.

Last Saturday, my left knee started with the pain and the buckling, and it's still going on.  And while I am well aware of my own laziness, even I need to walk around some: to the mailbox, to the kitchen, etc.  Why my knees do this is a mystery, and when they will stop is the same.  Thank goodness knitting and reading are non-ambulatory pastimes.

 My Christmas tree is bought, but not in the house yet.  It's soaking up water from its stand in the garage.  There's furniture in the den that has to be moved around before it can be set up.  Actually, getting to "re-do" the den is one of the things I like most about this season.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Chewy Influencer, November

A crystal-clear division of opinion on this month's free trial* products.

First up, Science Diet:
The photo on the label looks like this is a "morseled" food, which is what I've always fed my cats.  On opening the can, though,  I found the food was more pate'.  Erin had no trouble with it, digging right in.  Riley, on the other hand, sniffed and sniffed and looked before taking a bite, and, once she did, it was obvious she was displeased.  She looked like she was trying to chew peanut butter.  Although she finally swallowed the mouthful she had, she did not go back for seconds.

is little bites style, and EVERYbody went crazy for it.  Even Madeleine, who's on a diabetic diet, dove toward the emptied cup once Erin and Riley had been fed.  Checking with the vet, I found she could eat small servings, so everybody is happy.  I will most assuredly be buying this for them in the future.

*Each month, sends me products to try in return for my honest reviews.  There are no monetary transactions whatsoever.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

It Bears Repeating

More than once here, I've mentioned my love of tweed yarns.  I also love yarns with "sprinkled" colors, or "confetti."  Over the weekend, I used a ball of we are knitters' Sprinkled Pink to make two children's hats, and the sprinkles aligned themselves in very interesting ways:

That fascinates me.  I'm not enough of a math person to be able to figure it all out --- I just enjoy the prettiness.  

This has been a quiet week.  Grocery shopping on Monday;  somehow I always manage to have to go the week of Thanksgiving, and I don't even cook.  Son, daughter, daughter's boyfriend and I are meeting at son's house tomorrow night for board / card games and any junk / finger food we have around.  Yesterday and today, the weather's been grey and overcast, which, again, I have said here many, many times, I love.  Knitting, catching up with TV shows, working on the It-Can't-Be-Discussed-Here project have been the orders of the day.  Christmas decorating will begin Friday, as per tradition.  

I refuse to engage in Black Friday;  my years at the jewelry store were enough for a lifetime.  I refuse to even leave the house on Black Friday, unless there's some sort of emergency.  Saturday, I'm going to try out a crafting meet-up which, unfortunately, is being held at a store in a shopping center that's infuriatingly busy on regular days.  It's anyone's guess what it will be like then.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Life On the Couch

It's a quirk of my biology that when I am sick with cold/flu/sore throat, I cannot drink milk.  It tastes really, really funny, even on cereal.  It's such a truth that if there's ever a question about whether I'm actually getting sick, all I have to do is take a sip or two.  Milk as diagnostic tool.  Today, I've been able to drink milk for the first time in five days.  Therefore, this hateful cold is leaving me.  Yesterday it felt like I was getting sicker and never going to get better, but right now, there's a tall glass of milk on the coffee table, within arm's reach.

Feeling so crummy all week, there hasn't been much knitting going on.  There's been lots of sneezing and sleeping and nose-blowing and coughing and DVD-watching, though.  I unravelled my Peace Fleece vest, as it just wasn't going well.  Looking through Ravelry this afternoon, I found a new pattern to try the yarn on:
Now, it's possible that this won't make me happy, either, but it's worth a whirl.  If I have to tink again, the yarn can always be used for a nice big felted bag.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017


Every other Wednesday is Therapy Day for me, and today is an Every Other.  Yesterday, however, I felt that heaviness of limb and tickliness of nose and soreness of throat that signaled the onslaught of a cold, so my session was cancelled.  That left the entire day open for me to drink tea and take Zicam and bundle up in my sweats (even putting the hood on my hoodie up), nod off, and watch movies and read.  Not too much knitting, but a little:
I'm sort of a sucker for anything Advent, so "Knitvent 2017" from Curious Handmade was an easy enter for me.  This is the first pattern, called the "Land of Sweets Cowl."  This Gnome Acres colorway has been with me a while --- it's "Christmas Ham."

Which means
(you've got it)
mine can be called the "Land of Meats."

Monday, November 13, 2017

A Little Interview

As is her Monday wont, Kathy has provided excellent discussion questions.  Break into small groups and see what you come up with.

When were you last in a big city?
It says a lot about my life that I can't remember.  A long, long time ago.

What handknit did you wear this weekend?
A pair of socks.

Do your pets sit by the heating vents, radiators or the like when it is cold in the house?
Yes!  Erin stays right in front of the vent in the bedroom.  Occasionally, Riley will stand in front of one in the den, but not for long.  Our dear Lily would lie right on top of the vent, which never ceased to amaze me.  How could she stand that direct high heat?

How do you keep track of the knits you’ve created and what yarn was used?
I don't.  I never have.  People will ask what yarn something is made with, and my only answer is a shrug.  For things made for my etsy shop, I have to forcefully remind myself to write it down.

Does anybody have that Norman Rockwell scene around the Thanksgiving table anymore? 
When my husband was alive, he and I would sometimes go to his parents' for Thanksgiving, and there were a fair amount of people there. Growing up, as an only child, my parents and I would have a normal meal.  Daddy and I were more interested in watching football anyway.  Also, since he started his Christmas season at the jewelry store the next day, relaxing rest was more important than food.  😉

Do you have a small batch recipe that works?
Again, coming from a small family, and having a small one on my own, big batch recipes have never been necessary.  All my recipes are small batch.

How are your hands holding up?  Chapped? 
I'm a slave to hand lotion anyway, so my hands are in fairly good shape, except that my nails could be longer.  My lips are another story;  they stay rough all during cold weather.

What are you missing about summer? 
Nothing at all.  I loathe summer.  Loathe.  One extremely Athens-centric benefit of summer, if I were forced to name one, is the lack of students and the concomitant freeing up of traffic and parking spaces.

When was the last time you went through a security line?
Flying to and from Philadelphia when I went to see Shari (and Bridget!)

Does your family have a secret family recipe?
Daddy used to make something called "Stuff," which my mother tried a thousand times to get right, and never could.  It was a sweet spread (sorry --- that's as close as I can get) that we ate on saltine crackers.  Briton and Hannah LOVED it, too.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

That Wasn't Supposed to Happen

As the Christmas catalogs have begun to pour in, I've been asked by a friend to help look for a gift.  This has led me to look through catalogs which I normally don't.  And, of course, while going through them for the friend, I came across something that would make the pitch perfect gift for someone on my list.

Now, that's as far as my description can go, as that someone might well read this.  I can, and will, say that it is quite labor-intensive, so the possibility that it isn't finished in time is very real.  Yet I will try.

And, no, my friend and I haven't settled on the answer to my friend's dilemma.  Keep sending us mail, catalog merchants.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Things That Have Been Going On

Over the weekend, I spent a lot of time looking through free patterns on knitting websites.  This, as you all know, can be both time-consuming and a source of invigorating inspiration.  All of a sudden, there were ideas for project on project on project on project.  Even more than all that, though, there was this:
This may be THE most adorable baby model I've ever seen in a handknit.  The bowtie totally sells it, don't you think?  Khakis, shirt cuff just showing below the sweater. . .  Nails it.

Also this weekend, I caught my inventory back up in my etsy shop.  Not that I'm expecting a holiday surge or anything, it's just that it had been a while since the last update.

There have been clouds and temperature fluctuations and occasional rain over the past several days, and my sinuses wished me to understand that unquestioningly.  And yet, there have been times that it wasn't clear whether the hellacious headaches I've been having were only sinus, or with powerful cameos by Tension and/or Migraine.  All that has happened to me before.  What's been different is that my ribs seem to be attuned to the weather, too.  My knees have long since responded to weather --- I wonder if my ribs will keep this up after they are fully healed.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

How Many Words?

Today I have had a headache that has pained and confused me utterly.  Pain to the point that it's been unclear whether I should be taking migraine medicine or tension headache medicine or sinus headache medicine.  Mostly, I've taken a cocktail of all three.  But my head still HURTS.

So, here are some nice pictures for you:
My daughter and I have a couple of Statements.  One is "Everyone looks good in a turtleneck."  Another is "Everyone looks good in a cowboy hat."

We all start out so small.

"Don't know if you've heard, but I'm this year's Knitters' Hunk."

You can't beat puppy butts.

This is a sonic boom.

Okay, maybe a tumble of puppies can beat puppy butts.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

V, V, B

It would appear that I have inherited Telly Monster's penchant for

The Upside Down Shawl, the Woman Must Make Her Own Arrows wrap, and now this
It's a Knit Picks kit, and I think it's adorable.  Colorwork is not my thing --- intensely not my thing, as in I don't ever do it --- but this is too, too cute.

My son just posted this photo on Facebook, with the caption,
"[Today]'s more like THOR's Day, amirite?"

He's hysterical.


For some reason, this year I am constantly moving Christmas stuff around the house.  I'm not sure why things are so unsettled, but they...