Monday, December 31, 2007

Mittens. An update.

Still at the hospital, but holding his own tonight. He's still on all the good drugs and getting IV fluids/hydration. They've started force-feeding him liquid and gruel to try to get his system to accept food again, while he's still on all the anti-emetics and other digestive support through his IV.

I got to visit with him for about an hour, they gave me a private room and brought him in all wrapped in a tiny quilt (it's his while he's there in the hospital) and so he and I had a nice cuddle. He wailed and meowed and told me all about it for a while, then voluntarily ate two mouthfuls of chicken/rice food (they have to forcefeed him because he hasn't wanted anything when I'm not there, so they had me try to get him to eat a few bites of something while we were visiting. SUCCESS!) and then we had a nice cuddle and he took a long nap while I read a magazine and held him.

Purred up a storm.

I think we both felt better, but I think we were both sad when I had to leave. Still, it's a positive sign. I'm hopeful this might be resolved soon. And in the meantime, he's getting the very best care a kitty could hope for.

Honey is being an absolute terror in the absence of her brother. She is bored and lonely and creating chaos and mayhem in her wake. I think she'll be glad when he's home, too!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

a picture is worth a thousand words

Not much knitting content today... it's been a hell of a week. Mittens has been in and out of the vet hospital since the day after Christmas and is now residing at the regional critical care veterinary center for at least another 72 hours. Good thoughts would be appreciated if you care to send them to a little tuxedo kitty who is not feeling well. We miss him and we are very worried.

We are ending the holiday retail season with something resembling a whimper, at least, it's me whimpering. Between coming down with bronchitis and working extra hours, I am definitely whimpering. Boy, do I have horror stories. I haven't decided if I want to share them yet. We do try to keep it positive, darlings.

So on that note? Here is the positive. These are just a few of the things I'm super grateful about. My blessings, in part.

my mighty girls
Monkey loveWINNING from another angle
Kromski test runspoons
Devil Dog
FC-November Daze

My chosen family, my friends in my community and flung far into other communities (who aren't necessarily pictured because I don't have permission, etc, but who are there in spirit with all the other faces), my online friends, fellow knitters, fellow Ravelers and SnBers, my job, all the good stuff that comes my way very day. Grateful for it doesn't begin to describe it.

And? All of y'all.

Have the happiest new year imaginable.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Well I don't know about y'all, but we're having a very merry Christmas, here at La Chateau de Too Many Cats, A Dog, Frightening Amounts of Sock Yarn and A Couple Of Teenagers. Y'know, if I ever get a sign printed up, I might have to come up with something that scans.

Look what I found in my stocking! I am so getting it matted and framed. Better than an 8x10 glossy portrait, any day. Apparently it was supposed to be just a Christmas card but she liked it so much she made it into a full size watercolor/ink thing. My Riot Grrls! Or whatever they're calling themselves these days.
riot girls

We kept all manner of holiday traditions alive this year. For example, there was the ceremonial Wearing Of The Antlers...
Do. Not. Want.

The traditional eating of the sticky buns....
sticky buns

Or not.
I can has sticky buns?

I balanced out the sticky buns with something a little more substantial because god forbid I have a blood sugar crash or mood swings later in the day.
Breakfast of Champions

The cats contemplated payback for their Christmas ribbons. Actually, Honey contemplated payback, Mittens just hid under the tree and sulked.
contemplating mayhem

In the end, reviewers gave us two thumbs way up.
silly kid

There will be spinning, knitting, drinking of tea, making of lamb and spanakopita and the best part? I don't have food poisoning this year! I am able to enjoy Christmas!! I did wake up with a rather annoying cold which I'm convinced I caught from my mother (thanks, Mom!) who arrived in LA bearing viral goodness to share. But all in all, it beats last year.

Happy day, y'all! May it be merry, from all of us here to all of y'all there.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Get Better, Roo!

Every Christmas we do something like help with a friend's adopt-a-family, or donate to a local group or charity. This year, the giving is a little closer to home for me. The woman who fostered Mittens and Honey (she fosters feral kittens, sweetifies them and finds them good homes so they are not put to sleep or sent to shelters) has a little kitten from the same colony that produced Mittens and Honey. In fact, judging from his markings, I'd say he's related. I do love little Roo. I wish we could adopt him too. Technically he is still a "foster" kitten. Right now, he's very, very sick.

You can read about the saga of Roo starting here. There's a whole bunch of updates in subsequent posts, pictures and videos.

Roo could use a lot of good thoughts from all of y'all. I am a firm believer in that sort of thing and there are SO many people who are all rooting for little Roo to be ok, it just has to help.

This year, our Christmas giving is going to help Roo's foster family defray the vet bill. They're giving him every chance and as much time as they can to get better. He obviously really wants to live. She's fostered so many in the last year - here are the last 18 months worth of kittens who have been rehomed. She does this for free, because she loves animals and because she can. All she ever asks is that the people who take her kittens home love them and care for them and send pictures once in a while. We've had so much enjoyment from our little guys, I just can't not try to pay that forward a bit.

She is reluctantly taking donations - mostly because so many of her kitten's forever parents badgered her into putting up a Paypal button. As long as Roo says he wants to fight, the button is staying up. Right now, he is literally living on time that people have donated to keep him in that oxygen tent, otherwise they'd have had to make some hard calls earlier this week. It blows me away that they're doing this for a foster kitty, but that's the kind of people they are. They're good people. I want to help.

The most recent update here.

If you can send a good thought or two, I know the family will appreciate that so much.

Friday, December 14, 2007

I do not have much of a head for alcohol, but Lord, I do love me some Bailey's Irish Cream and Penzey's Hot Chocolate mix. Just sayin. Make it all up with a little soymilk, bit of vanilla bean and a cinnamon stick and you're right smack dab in your happy place. Tomorrow I am going to read this and think, "Holy shit. Mental note. Do not blog whilst drinking." but in the meantime, what the hey.

Yesterday was an exciting day at work for me. We had a visit from our corporate manager. Now, he's a nice guy and normally I like him. But this is the holidays and I do not like anyone, much, right now. Yesterday, he drove me a mite crazy. Like, really. I got a little bit mental and OCD on his ass. Y'all are going to laugh at me for this one, but, I am very definitely a little OCD. There are certain ways that certain things MUST be done and if they are not done that way, I get anxious. And he was doing things wrong. I mean, I'm sure they were fine, but they were just wrong according to me. So here I am, anxiously following Mr. Corporate around the store, politely tapping him on the shoulder every few minutes and saying, "I'm sorry, but that's just wrong." and fixing what he was doing. And then there was the gift wrapping. Do not get me started on the gift wrapping. There is a certain way to gift wrap and all other ways are wrong. HIS way was wrong. I don't know how amused he was to be informed of this. I honestly don't know what I was thinking, except, "OMGWRONG." and I was in the middle of gift wrapping 8 verbena candles when he got all helpful on me and then this whole smackdown came down about the wrapping.

Mr. Corporate Manager does not know I am teh crazy but I think he may be starting to figure it out.

I also cut my thumb with a box cutter. Twice. Because I stuck it in the pocket of my apron and the blade wasn't secure and it slipped and I cut myself. Did I mention, TWICE? Before deciding that maybe I should take the box cutter out of my apron pocket? I am, apparently, immune to operant conditioning. If this were a lab and I were a rat, I'd be getting all manner of shocks in my quest for the cheese. It's like fish flakes and the little plastic castle. "Oh, box cutter *stab* ow!." ..... la la la la la.... "Oh, box cutter *stab* OW." ... la la la la la.... "Oh.... wait.... box cutter. Where have I seen this before? Do you have a bandaid? Perhaps, two? Would you mind fetching them while I ponder the completely unrelated mysteries of Box Cutter In My Pocket and Why Am I Bleeding?"

Also dropped a new roll of cello on my head and then almost hit a customer with it (accidentally) but won my saving throw and instead knocked all our lotion testers off the counter. By dropping a roll of cello on them. While I was down on the floor picking those up, I whacked my head on the corner of the counter. Then, I kicked the trash over (accidentally), tripped over it as I was walking to the counter with 8 jars of honey precariously stacked in my arms BUT IT WAS OKAY. I did not drop any of the honey. Knocked the keyboard off the cash desk, lost the magic money pen, scratched myself with the tape gun and knocked plastic olives onto the ground, yes. But I didn't drop any honey.

Later, I made the Baby Jesus cry. And broke the internet.

Ok, those last two are total hyperbole. But the rest of it? All true. My day was lame. The very best part was when I drove home and made myself the aforementioned hot cocoa, handed the children my credit card and told them to order Thai and went to bed with the kittens and my new electric blanket.

"Mama is going to bed with a toddy, children. You're on your own."

Such is the life of a holiday retail person.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Stash Enhancement Expedition

S.E.X. on the first date

Two skeins of sock yarn and two skeins of Elizabeth Lavold silky wool wot I think is going to become a Branching Out. Seems a good weight for an LA scarf and the color will look spiffy with my new coat.

Because I totally need another scarf and more yarn, right?

Saturday, December 08, 2007

pulled pork

Carolina style pulled pork, served right, with the cole slaw ON TOP, inside the bun. Top that sucker off with some vinegar and sauce and you are looking at some of the best eating LA has to offer.

Baby Blues BBQ, on Lincoln Ave. in Venice, 2 blocks south of Rose (at Sunset)

They also do a fine glass of sweet tea. As it should be.
I just have to say that when someone is willing to go into a yarn store and smell Elizabeth Lavold Silky Wool and fondle alpaca, that's a very good internet date and full of WIN.

"You took him to a yarn store???" the youngest eyerolled. "Mom. That's like, so totally a third date thing. Don't you know anything?"

Well. Anyway. I may be lame and not know anything, but I had a really nice time today.
It does feel nice to finish something! In the last few days, I've made several of those one row handspun scarves.

one row handspun scarf, leaf peep one row handspun scarf, rosy rocks

The first scarf is handspun yarn that I made from the Spunky Eclectic roving in "Leaf Peep" and the second is spun from Funky Carolina's "Rosy Rocks" - the Leaf Peep is bulky weight, I'd say the Rosy Rocks is a little thinner gauge, maybe a heavy worsted but with some slubs and a little of the thick and thin going on here and there. Both of them knit up great. That's SUCH a fun pattern. I think I'm going to use it for some socks. It's a fun rib. These scarves are both earmarked for Christmas gifts. Just enough to wrap and knot, then tuck the ends into a winter coat. Very pretty and very warm.

one row handspun scarf, leaf peep one row handspun scarf, rosy rocks

Today has been much with the teenage girl induced drama. Some days, as I've said elsewhere, the best you can do is just try to surf the waves of chaos and try not to fall in.

So now the only two WIPs I am feeling particularly urgent about are Lady E and That Damn Painter's Scarf. And due to what is probably a permanent falling out between me and That Damn Painter, there is no way in hell I am sending off almost a hundred bucks worth of silk and mohair blend handpaint that involved HOURS of knitting time, to someone who can't appreciate a good thing when they're lucky enough to have found it. I can't bear to keep it, I can't bear to wear it, I don't want to frog it... and I have to get it the hell out of here. The problem I'm having is, I already gave it to that person, and maybe it's tacky to not actually send it to them, but... I just can't. I've given enough already. Not One More Ounce Of Anything.

This, kiddies, is what is known as being Tossed Out The Airlock Into The Cold, Airless Vacuum Of Space. It doesn't happen very often, but I'm finding my boundaries are a lot easier to assert lately, and I'm a lot more ready to just call bullshit when I see it and have done already. My hand is poised on the airlock button a lot more often these days. I just don't have the time or patience to play stupid games.

I think I'm gonna finish The Scarf Formerly Known As That Damn Painter's, bathe it and block it, and just tuck it away until I know what to do with it. Something will come to me.

SO that first, then on to finishing Lady E. Maybe I can get her done by the New Year and sent off to her recipient who should have something warm and cuddly while it's still cold enough to enjoy it.

Finishing is a good thing to do at the tag end of the old year, cleaning up and making room for the new. That applies to life as much as knitting.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

It does feel good to finish something. Fueled by my recent Clapotis success, I've picked Lady E back up and started putting more squares onto her. I also cast on and am about 2/3 of the way through a scarf that I'm giving as a gift this holiday.

Handspun One Row Scarf

This is the first yarn I spun on my Kromski and so the scarf is a gift for my mom who bought me the wheel for my birthday last year. Got the idea to use the Yarn Harlot's One Row Handspun Scarf pattern from Cass, who was my downhill pal for the recent SP11, because she knit one up recently and it looked SO GOOD I knew it was the perfect pattern for Mom's scarf.

FC-November Daze

November's Funky Carolina roving of the month club "November Daze" - merino/bamboo top. Isn't it gorgeous? I can't wait to spin this one up and whatever I make with it is going to be MINE. I don't think I'll be gifting this yarn.

I really ought to get my arse in gear. I have so many plans for today. Alas, none of them involve actual yarn. All of them include things that will make my grotty apartment, er, less grotty!

Oh, and internet dating? I'm going on an actual internet date. Well, not a date on the internet, but, I'm meeting someone for lunch. Yes, in a well lit public place! I am cautiously optimistic! The emailing has been very nice.

I'm going on my first actual "date" with someone (virtually unknown to me, not a part of my tight knit group of friends/community or from the ren faire) for the first time in... oh bugger... *counts* well... at least 14 years.

Cue the panic. I wonder if I should wax my eyebrows.