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Nov. 16th, 2013


My Cats are Defective, or Smokey Rides Again

I was in my bedroom, doing my nightly after shower things and heard scrabbling on the back porch.  I can't control the porch lights from my room, of course, and I was extremely undressed, so I shrugged it off.  Until Hermes hopped up on my desk and looked out the window with great interest.

He didn't growl.  He didn't chirp, as he does with birds and my fuzzy sleep socks.  He just watched and switched his tail thoughtfully.

It occurred to me that I can see perfectly well on the back porch if I turn off the interior lights and let my eyes adjust.  By the time I did that, Hermes was interested in what I was doing rather than the 'whatever' outside.  The 'whatever' wasn't in evidence either, and I was ready to lay the blame on the 'possums, until I noticed one of the big wooden bird feeders was swinging very hard though nothing else was so much as shivering in an errant breeze.  Not that there was a breeze, because it's been one of those calm, cool, drizzly autumn days here.  Um.  Well, then.

It's November, bear.  Go to sleep.  And as for you feline lummoxes, snoozing on my bed, you hit the deck whenever my friends and family come over, even when you see them almost weekly for months, but ignore a bear?  No catnip for you.

Jun. 20th, 2013


I'm Thinking an All White Wardrobe for the Summer

I had one foot out the back door and heard a low drone.  We have carpenter bees and I've been working on my bee issues and putting on my big girl panties, so I prepared to keep going, but not without a wary glance just to be safe.

Which probably saved me from a very exciting evening.

The buzz was a big yellow hornet, which are usually pretty calm, for hornets. This one was exceedingly pissed off, hovering about four feet from the door and aimed at me.

Reasonably enough, I took one big step back and closed the door. The hornet landed on the concrete floor of the porch and proceeeded to sting the ever living shit out of it. Then it crawled onto a dark green piece of plastic and stuing it into submission. Then it landed on the black handle of my umbrella and is still stinging it. It's been over an hour and it's still going strong. These things fly by night, too, so this could go on for a while.

I think the dog is staying outside tonight and so is the laundry. And I'm going to embrace my terror of bees, wasps, and their kin and never leave the house again, because they really are out to get me.

More seriously, I'm curious to know what has angered this bug so much. What did the back porch and some plastic do to you, little fella? ... And how soon will some bird or bat notice your distraction and eat you (and your Mom and all your sisters, if I'm lucky)?  ... And what is it about human nature that gives me such a strong urge to toss something onto the porch, to see what this hornet will do?


Jun. 15th, 2013


Ah, Spring, and Love is in the Air

or 'Why I'm Turning the Light On Before Entering the Basement From Now On'

As usual, this starts with seeing some movement out of the corner of my eye.  I immediately thought 'lizard', which is cool because the lizards here are cute and harmless, and, yes, sometimes do get in the basement for reasons of their own.  The door's open during the day, so they can come and go as they please.

I kept looking into the shadow under the wash sink and yes, dark scales.  Lots of scales so... a really long lizard... with two tails twining together and and no head, or...  It did take me a moment to realize what I was seeing.  They're just black snakes (non poisonous, don't mess with them, they won't mess with you), but if I wind up with a basement full of snakelets I will be most displeased.

And that's how doing laundry was actually exciting today.

It's funny how phobias work:  if those had been two wasps buzzing at the windows (far from the washing machine), I'd have been cowering.  Snakes within three feet of my legs... meh.  So long as it's not threatening me, whatever.  Though I won't be walking in there blind anymore, because even black snakes don't like being walked on.

Jun. 4th, 2013


Just a Blurb

I must be terribly immature, because writing awkward, angsty sex scenes makes me giggle in a very depraved manner.  And now, back into the breach of examining exactly what being an empath means for teh sexxor times. 

Apr. 28th, 2013


Kitty Pics!

I finally broke down and got a new camera.  And discovered I have a face like a potato, but, thankfully, there's no such thing as an ugly cat.  Even if she is tri-colored.

I am now formally fostering the calico manx for an animal rescue group (there was paperwork, and everything).  And I now know that people who claim you can get in anywhere if you have a clipboard and act like you know what you're doing aren't entirely full of it.  No, sir, I can't put a hold on the black poodle mix, because I'm not a volunteer for the group.  Please to note absence of bright red shirt with group's name on it, yes?

So, Calliope pics under the cut.

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Feb. 25th, 2013


The World's Slowest Embroiderer

Thank you for all your kind comments in the previous massively oversharing post. *hugs you all*

catsbutterfly 004

It was meant to be a Christmas present but... yeah (project idea from my sister for her dil, so working on it was hard). Anyway, now to embark on turning it into a Kindle sleeve. The bit of orange at the bottom is going to be the lining. Though if she turns it inside-out, the recipient will at least be hard-pressed to lose her Kindle. ;-p The color quality kind of sucks: the thread is all the shades of purple (and blue--I don't care what the DMC manufacturers think--their blueish purple swings into blue in one case).

Jan. 13th, 2013


Into the Sargasso Sea, With Crook and Needle

Isn't this lovely? Who doesn't like enormous spirals?

At this point, I don't. Neither the original pattern nor the sashay yarn version at the linked to site worked for me, though if I had some starch I could have made an epic witch's hat, since the center of the spiral wanted very badly to form a long, tapered tube.

So, I decided to do it my way.

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Dec. 22nd, 2012


(no subject)

Thank you for the card, alafaye!

weather, movies, whiningCollapse )

Dec. 9th, 2012


Still Alive, More or Less

Get your flu shots, guys, it's bad this year. This is coming to you from The Land Beyond the Flu, Maybe. I've spent the last week doing nothing more strenuous than playing ainars games because my life had become a NyQuil commercial. And I'm one of those people who normally breeze through flu-like things with half doses of decongestants. Oh, and it lingers. Or it's turning into bronchitis, whatever.

So, productivity? Nil. Christmas is nearly upon me and I have a present that may not be ready in time, so, yay, embroidering like a madwoman, albeit not on a long overdue feathery thing, sorry. And I'm supposed to be making candy. Hack hack cough COUGH--people want my candy, I'm sure.

There has been no decorating and the furballs all still hate Percival, which causes Percival to snuggle up to me all the time, which makes them hate him more, and I don't want to deal with that and a Christmas tree, so no decorating. Also I get winded throwing a towel over the shower doors, so carrying the wee little fake tree down from upstairs is not happening for a while yet. However, the house may smell slightly Christmas-y, though I have no sense of smell so who knows, because I'm experimenting with feline pine litter. It still smells fresh out of the bag because my cats refuse to use it so far.

This post has been brought to you by half a dose of DayQuil and a lack-of-yoga grouchiness.

Nov. 26th, 2012


Wish List

In the name of trying to work myself into feeling more seasonal, my list.

1. Mail! Postcards, letters, Christmas cards, they're all good.
2. Crinkleballs for the cats.
3. Knitting or crochet thingies. Double-ended crochet hooks, unusual yarn, that sort of thing.
4. Miniature My Little Ponies (yes, yes, I'm secretly six years old. And some of the ponies glow in the dark! See, six.). Wal-Mart has them for much less than Amazon, yikes.
5. Donate to an animal charity or Alzheimer's research. Or spend an afternoon giving a caregiver some respite care if you can.

cleverly hidden address--any stalkers will be condemned to clean litterboxesCollapse )

Oct. 21st, 2012


Squick and Knit

things I never thought I"d have occasion to googleCollapse )

Knooked honeycomb-ish placemat
4 mm hook, worsted weight cotton, chain 35, co in back hoops of ch for 35 stitches, k 10 rows. Always slip final stitch in row. k=knit, p=purl, s=slip knitward unless otherwise indicated

row 1: k1, s1, repeat to end
row 2: p1, s1 as if to purl, repeat to end
row 3: same as row 1
row 4: k all
row 5: k2, (s1, k1) until final stitch, s1
row 6: k2 (s1 as it to purl, k1) until final stitch, s1
row 7: same as row five
row 8: k all

repeat pattern until work is fifteen inches long, k 10 rows(~2 inches), co.

Oct. 2nd, 2012


Knooking Project

Due to popular demand, ;-p, I'm trying to make a cat blanket. Or something. Knooking it, though it would be a perfectly fine knitting pattern. This one probably won't wind up at the animal shelter, because, somehow, when I picked up yarn to use I chose some that's shades of black, white, and gray, not unlike a certain kitty I'm missing. Goodness knows I can always use another cat blanket.

Edit: I'm dubious about this new collapsing/unfolding cut-text thing. Why change what's not broken?

Two Hank Blanket Pic and PatternCollapse )

Sep. 30th, 2012


Variegated Yarn Tutorial

I have a lot of variegated yarn I didn't choose. It's pretty, but sometimes it seems to look prettier in the hank or on the cone than in a project. I've looked for patterns for it, but, seriously, I don't need six-hundred and ninety yards worth of pink, white, and black potholders.


So, here are some guidelines I've developed for using variegated yarn--yes, even the dread and terrible rainbow yarn. My guidelines do not address making clothing because the 'clothiest' thing I've ever made was a shawl. I tend towards afghans, but hopefully at least some of this information could help with clothing design.

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Aug. 29th, 2012


(no subject)

You become indulgent
As the mystery approaches,
Profligate with noon light and long hours of dusk,
Flashes of scarlet in the trees,
With delicacies and caresses.

You become patient and watchful,
Stay a little longer,
But, still, go at your ease.

You weigh things in strange scales:
Better to go, as a wild thing, as a tame one,
Here among family or there as merely a creature?
Is it your pride? Your over-attachment?
Is there pain? Would lack of pain otuweigh living fear?

Or, in the end, is there merely grass,
Cool and damp in the growing dark,
With flashes of scarlet in the trees?

Aug. 21st, 2012


Ribbed Mitered Square

Cast on one:

1 knit 1, yo, knit 1 in same cast on stitch = 3 stitches
2 k 1, p1, slip 1
3 k to just before center stitch, yo, k center stitch, yo, k to end of row, always slipping final stitch
4 knit 1, purl 1, until end of row, always slipping final stitch knitward

Repeat 3 and 4 until desired size.

Someday, there will be a picture. >.> *misses camera*

... There's something a bit off about a person who decides to see just how far one hank of yarn will go with knitting, isn't there? In a completely unrelated matter, I expect to have a hideous Valentine-colored knitted baby blanket around here in a few days. *cough* I can sell on Etsy, yes?


Diet cat food must taste wonderful: all of my cats prefer it, though only one of them needs it. By 'needs it', I mean if she was a person, Melangel would be morbidly obese. Also, if she was a person, I'd say she was a comfort eater, who is very anxious about Percival (still. *sigh*), so I don't want to cut off the dry food supply entirely: goodness only knows what she'd chew on then. She's not happy about the situation herself: you can tell she's frustrated with not being able to jump like she used to. Hence the 'healthy eating' cat food that Done It, who I can lift easily with one hand, steals. At least Melangel likes it when she can get it before Done It.
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Aug. 7th, 2012


(no subject)

I think I love the internet, just a little.

I'm a creature of darkness: I hear many interesting sounds from outside that I can't identify. Sometimes my father can help since he grew up in this general area and used to hunt. Sometimes he hears "Well, it sounds like a whinnying horse, but, you know, smaller" and just looks at me.

I googled 'night sounds whinny' and came up with this in the first couple links. The very first audio recording is what I've been hearing.

Also, my cats do not approve of my thing-you-must-not-walk-on-lest-two-legger-squeals making sounds like a screech owl.

Jul. 26th, 2012


(no subject)

I'd just like to take a moment to say that I really hate hornets. I flicked "something" heavy off the back of my leg at the pond, and the son of a bitch chased me all the way well into my yard (something like a fifth of a mile). I have a phobia of bees anyway, so this little escapade really didn't help. I wound up hiding under a blanket I pulled off the clothesline while having a great little panic attack. So much hate.

It can be winter time nao, yes?

Jul. 19th, 2012


Feline Adventures

There's a hummingbird feeder on my front porch, hanging a few feet from the window. Percival has taken to spending his days in the living room window, watching the road and the dog and especially these birds.

The hummingbirds have taken note of this.

Poor Percival was in the window, daydreaming about squab, when one of the hummingbirds went into full attack display mode at him. Percival was lucky there was a screen between them. He then turned to me and my father, looking utterly shocked, and retreated to the couch, where he could have me between him and any vicious eensy birds.

I'm starting to think Percival is one of those cats. You know, the ones that get called 'Lucky' and wander around with half an ear, one eye, three legs, and a missing tail. See, we have these kitchen chairs. We've had them for many years without a problem. There are slats in their backs, so cats especially enjoy playing through them. Many a game of getchee has been played in those chairs.

Percival got his head stuck between the slats last night. He wiggled loose, but it took him a few very stressful seconds to do it. In the many cats that have passed through this house none have ever gotten their head stuck in the slats. I suppose I should count myself lucky that he didn't escape into the old duct work when he was upstairs.

Jul. 16th, 2012


Roasting Tomatoes, With Fork and Blender

If you Google roasting tomatoes you will find many suggestions, all involving roma tomatoes, which are 'meaty', which is to say, not quite the fluid filled sacks other tomatoes are. This is not to say you can't roast a slicing tomato, it's just that they will look like they should feature predominantly in Freddy vs the Killer Tomatoes from Outer Space when you're done. While they would ooze off any shishkabob, they do just fine chopped up and turned into soup.

As for why you would want to go to the trouble... a roasted tomato tastes like tomato soup, only without the salt. It adds another dimension to soups and sauce with a neglible amount of work (unless, like me, your culinary endeavors somehow involve every pot you own).

More than you wanted to knowCollapse )

Jul. 9th, 2012



I just finished this project in "seabreeze PIMA" (whatever 'PIMA' is, IDK). Which means shades of brown, teal, and ivory. If ever my camera returns to me... sigh.

Anyway, for those who are interested in a knooking project but uninterested in washcloths, this is a good one. Knooking, so far as I'm doing it, seems best suited for small pieces, no more than forty stitches wide because they all need to fit on the hook at the same time and there is no stop at the end of the hook. I suppose the stitches could be allowed to trail off onto the rescue line, but that makes me nervous and I tend to get tangled and then it's all downhill from there. This scarf pattern, as written, calls for twenty-six stitches so it's easily manageable.

This was my first drop stitch project and I did have a few moments of horror at the beginning when it looked like I was hlding a mass of tangles. A few tugs here and there worked wonders. The only thing I would change about the pattern is to suggest slipping (sliding the stitch from rescue line--or needle--onto hook or active needle) the last stitch of every row. I think it makes for a neater edge, but ymmv.

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November 2013



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