Friday, August 29, 2008

Everyone is safe and sound,

some are back home, some are back at school, and some are readjusting to the quiet (note that these are not necessarily mutually exclusive categories). Well, and getting ready for the travel season to start next week. More soon.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Oribel has a fovorite yard toy

I know this is Wednesday, and some of you may be looking for pictures and/or stories about Oribel, especially since I kind of failed at the WoW post last week. I hope you are ok with a quick story, and pictures of something other than Oribel. (If not, I'm sorry, but you might want to stop reading now, 'cause that's just the way the cookie crumbles today.)
Oribel loves to be in the yard. As you probably know by now, she hangs out under the bird feeder and checks out the bird bath. She has also decided that stalking about in the tall grass and weeds at the edge of the yard is a really excellent plan, as well as moving about in the forest by the shed. Well, at this point we aren't exactly sure where all she goes, which really is starting to bother me; especially when she stays out past her curfew. For some reason she doesn't seem to understand that her curfew is earlier and earlier every evening. Heaven knows what she'll do come December. Anyway, one of her favorite things to do out in the yard chase butterflies, which leads to the lack of picture issue. It is pretty much impossible to get pictures of a cat bounding about the yard in pursuit of moving objects. So today I am just going to leave you with pictures of her favorite yard toy not in motion. Oh, she didn't actually get to play with this one.






Monday, August 25, 2008

I know, I know,

I have been MIA for a week now, and no pictures of anything. Well, we have been on great adventures, cooking, knitting like crazy, and packing. Well, only one of us around here has been knitting, but several people have been packing.
The Great Annual Out-Migration started yesterday and will be continuing today. Yesterday I drove Mr. A to the Twin Cities to go home, then Hubband and I took DTY to Winona to catch her train back to Portland. Today I am driving DTE to Duluth and then I will return home tomorrow. Great adjustments are in store, going from a house full of five people to a house with only two; really only one at least half the time as it will turn out. That is another great life change around here that I haven't reported in on. More on that, and all those promised pictures, as well as pictures of finished knitted items, after I get home from the last school delivery.
In the meantime, Chan, Sissy, and the Knight could use some good thoughts. Mugsy will be greatly mised.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Well, I was going to give you adventure pictures,

but I am having problems with Blogger uploading them. So we are all just going to have to wait until tomorrow. Well, unless the two of us get back from Tuesday's travels really late, and then it might be postponed again. Our last planned adventure is for Friday, when the girl-not-so-much-anymore-children, Mr. A, and I all go to the The Great Minnesota Get-Together. I am not sure what all we will do there, besides the mandatory stop at the corner of Judson & Nelson, find out the what the latest "on-a-stick" item is, eat food and cotton candy (according to Mr. A), and do lots of looking and walking. Rumor has it that one of the new food items is going to be chocolate covered bacon. Sounds like an "ick" to me. But I don't like deep-fried Twinkies, Snickers, or Reese's Peanut Butter Cups on-(or off)-a-stick either. Somethings should just never be battered and deep-fried in my opinion. Cheese-curds do not fall into that category, by the way.
For lots more fun and food info you may check it out here; the Gopher in the upper right hand corner will happily lead you to the food. I really would like to figure out a way to go to this event next week. DTY also wishes she could go, but she will be far away by then.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

I'm sorry,

I won't have the pictures and report of yesterday's adventure for you today after all. It took me longer to get ready for the "Home-for-the-summer-getting-ready-to-leave-next-week-college-student-party" at our house tonight. Never fear, the patio is getting lots of use, fire pit and all, for the party, but no pictures of that goings on.
I can report in that apple/caramel dutch oven cobbler may be the best combo we have ever made! I will be working that up as a non-dutch oven recipe for Mr. A to take home as he is pretty sure his dad doesn't have one. I'll share it with you when I do. Look for adventure pictures (lots) and report tomorrow.

Saturday, August 16, 2008


Yesterday Mr. A and I made the "easy Tiramisu" recipe he had been promised some time ago; as you can see, he did most of the work. I did the finding/reaching of things around the kitchen, it was easier than trying to explain where stuff was.

This is what it looked like tonight for dessert (well, after we had cut some slices off).

Today the two of us went on an adventure (my words, not his), saw a bunch of stuff from different kingdoms (at least three), walked around a lot, took pictures, and drove. I know, really exciting sounding. I promise it was, and I promise to give you a expanded report with pictures tomorrow. For now I will just give you one more picture of the bread we had for dinner, fresh out of the oven on pizza peel (aka the large wooden spatula).

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Last count for Thursdays medal totals.

Banana Slugs are all over the Pacific Northwest, where DTY goes to school. In a couple of weeks there will be several more of them about her campus; there is a chance one might be lost on library shelves or some such place. She is hoping that more will make their way West to keep these company in the future. That will happen, but she gets a pair of yellow and black socks first. (This makes medal numbers six, seven, eight, and nine for those of you trying to keep track.)
I hope they don't really eat that quarter, she needs as many of those a she can get for her laundry at school. Maybe a slug will get left in the laundry room if it isn't careful.

I really did knit a Pop-Tart

Well, it is also a camera case. It even has a pocket for those "extras."
The original idea/pattern can be found here, but I did a lot of modifications to it. It makes project number five over the finish line. (Please note that these have all been small, fast, easy projects!)
This item, along with the chocolate rabbit are serving double duty (hence, why I tossed them into the Ravelympis ring in the first place). For WhoDuKnit in July we read Dead Sleep by Greg Iles. It was a really great read; I enjoyed it enough to read a couple of his other books afterwords. (Which has made me a bit behind on this month's book.....)
At one point in the book, the main character, Jordan, has been kidnapped and is having insulin put into her via IV. The plan is to keep her almost dead, but not quite. She had found a bag full of junk food, including Pop-Tarts and Twinkies, and had eaten those to counter-act the insulin. (I won't bother explaining the science here that they explained in the book.) So I did the Pop-Tart and figured a chocolate bunny counted a junk food. I am going to give the bunny to a friend of mine next Easter. She doesn't really like chocolate at all, so never has one in her basket and I figure this will be a good substitute. I think I will make one for our other friend became diabetic in this past year. I actually don't really have a need for the Pop-Tart camera case, but Jordan is a professional photographer, so.... Anybody need a pink and tan vegan camera bag that looks like food?

A hat over the finish line,

makes finished item number four for Ravelympics.


I made Jared's (aka, brooklyntweed) Turn A Square hat for the Seaman's, because they can always use more hats.
I could go on and on and on about how wonderful this pattern is (very ), how fast it knits up (very again), and how many more of these I will be making (lots), but I will spare you all that. I wil just say, if you are a knitter, "You must knit this hat. Soon." (If you aren't a knitter, this hat might just be what should make you learn.)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Sometime you follow through, sometimes you forget.

Sometime ago I wrote a note to myself and others about cupboard doors in the house. (If you haven't read that, or don't remember it, you should go read it before continuing with this post. It will make a lot more sense. Come back here when you're done, we'll still be around I promise, and I'll even wait patiently.

See, still here and now you have lots of context for the rest of what I have to say about Oribel today. At that time she was just big enough to climb onto the lower shelf of the dish cupboard and put herself all over the plates and bowls.

Well, now she has grown enough to go directly for the glasses and coffee cups when we neglect to remember to close the door. (There is a chance that if I had put away clean dishes, she never would have fit. Of course, there is also the chance she just would have moved them to the floor to get where she thought she should be.)

I am hoping we can work on follow through of keeping the door closed. She has figured out how to climb from a lower shelf to a higher one when it comes to "her" (read that as "all") bookshelves in the house and I am not real crazy about that look she is giving the next shelf up.
She couldn't seem to figure out why we would have this icky shelf liner on her otherwise comfy spot.

Or why I had issues with Hubband having left the door open in the first place. He was just being helpful to her exploring more of her possession, after all.

I think he mostly thought she was kind of entertaining in there, especially the look she gave us after we reopened the door he closed on her.

Not that she cared if the door was closed with her inside! (I obviously also thought she was entertaining enough to take pictures before removing her.)

A few days later I came into the kitchen to find the cupboard with the dishtowels wide open. Guess who I found in there? That one I am pretty sure she opened on her own as it is floor level and she spends a lot of her time working on getting all of our lower cupboards open. I think she might be having Sadie teach her how to open zippers so they can get into my knitting together.

Don't forget to stop over at Whiskers on Wednesday ; Jessi's cats are today's spotlight. If you wanted to visit her too, she is looking for a bit of advice about her cat.

Will wonders never cease?

Today Mr. A and I ran some errands that included stopping by Best Buy to get our converter box. He and Hubband set it up after dinner and it made an amazing difference! We now seem to have reception/picture quality similar to what we had when we had cable in Texas (folks that was 21 years ago) and we seem to have about thirty channels! We just wish we had had this thing last Friday for the opening ceremonies! Once I figure it all out, I have to admit that I may go back to watching TV a bit more often. There is a big difference between a just a few only slightly better than fuzzy channels (well, only one for a fair portion of the winter when the antenna is frozen in place) and what we got tonight! We are getting two Twin Cities Public TV stations, and we used to get none. It is amazing what one little box can do!

Mr. A and I also stopped by to see DTY at work. She has been selling stuff (aka produce) on street corners since mid-July, and was in town yesterday and today. (Most of the time she has been selling in Decorah, Iowa. This is her last week of work as she needs to do a few things before leaving for school besides being gone from 7 am to 9pm for work. It was fun to see her corn truck and pick up melons, zucchini, and corn from her. We grilled the corn and zucchini tonight as well as the Runsas Mr. A and I made. (If that link didn't work for some reason, try this one instead.) Don't worry, he is bringing the recipe home with him. We have never grilled the zucchini outside before, but fortunately for us he was able to tell us how his dad does it and it turned out great!

On the knitting front I almost have the Pop Tart all done. I just need to add the sprinkles and do a little bit of sewing and I'll have another FO for Ravelympics. I started my hat tonight wile we watched some swimming and gymnastics. There is a fair chance I will have it done tomorrow too. That's mostly because I have an hour and a half of class time in the morning to knit and then knit night tomorrow. It is that big of a hat. With any luck I will have pictures of that stuff for you tomorrow sometime.
Speaking of tomorrow, it will be time for another Whiskers on Wednesday post. Never fear, it will be up, but I might not get it there until later than usual. Check back sometime after two my time and I hope it will be done by then.
For now I am off to sleep.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Another object finished for Ravelympics

I finished my Knitted Chocolate Easter Bunny. Well, this is the second on I have made in the last two days or so; the first one didn't come out correctly at all. Apparently there has been a correction to the pattern I had printed off months ago and for some D.A. reason I didn't think to go look for corrections when part of it wasn't making sense to me. I just slogged on, thinking I was the one being confused about lots of decreases with only five stitches to work with. Yeah, well, anyway, I ended up with a very mutated blob of brown knitted mess. So, of course after I was done sewing it up, I go look up the pattern on-line and find the correction. So of course I started another one. Fortunately, this one ended up looking pretty much like it was supposed to. I think I might even make another one or two before next Easter, though I think I will use smaller yarn to get a smaller bunny.

You may remember awhile back I mentioned I had jumped on the five minute bandwagon? Well, as I had suspected DTE is wanting a pizza/bread stone and peel to take back to school with her. This stuff makes great bread and wonderful pizza in about thirty minutes. We have been eating pizza with fresh mozzarella, basil from the deck, tomatoes (not quite from our garden yet), garlic pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil several times a week for the last several weeks. It has been a fast, easy, delicious dinner for summer nights. I will add that this is such a great band wagon to be on that I fell down and bought the book. I will also add that I checked it out from the library twice before I did so. I settled for twice since there kept being a waiting list and I didn't want to have to wait again. This is also why a sweater box has taken up residence in our fridge, it is the perfect thing for storing the bread dough in.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Mr. A says,

"It fits just fine." I told him I had been concerned that he might want it baggier than I made. He says it's OK, but I told him that there is plenty of time for him to wear it around in the next two weeks to make sure. I also told him I would be happy to make him a bigger one if he decides he wants it that way. I hope he believes me.

It turns out the pattern for the dishcloth I was working on last night was just fine; I had thought the image was a little different than it is. As soon as I actually looked at someone else's in the "all knowing data base", I realized it was OK. So I finished it up this morning before heading up to the Cities, making for #2 FO.
There was no such thing as bright sunshine this morning, I think it had something to do with the rain last night. Luckily there was a bit left out in the yard when we got home, so I am hoping the image in this picture is a bit better.

First item done!

This is the first of my many dishcloths for Ravelympics. The image of the two hearts at the top, intertwined wedding rings, and the one heart at the bottom doesn't show up really well in real life either, but I am going to see if bright morning sunlight would give me a better picture. During the ceremonies tonight, I ripped back the part of the WIP hat that had a mistake in it, worked on the Dr. Who scarf, and then once the Parade of Nations started and I felt like I could read charts and watch TV at the same time, I started another dishcloth. I am about halfway done with it, but have just about decided there is a mistake in the pattern. So I decided I would look at it again tomorrow to work out the fixing, when I have a bit of sleep in me. (Yes, I watched broadcast TV. Yes, it may well have been the first time since the Super Bowl. Yes, I will be watching more in the next couple of weeks. See, we do need to get one of those converter boxes for our very old TV; it does get turned on occasionally.)

Here are the finished socks, started way back when. Again, the light tonight was leaving a bit to be desired, but I think you can tell that this is indeed a finished pair of socks. It is just a bit hard to see the lace-pattern-thing going on.

However, I think you can see the cool wrapped stitches here. I wasn't too sure about them at first, and am not sure I would put them all the way around the cuff again, but I do like how they turned out. Jessi, I promise they didn't turn out to be as hard to do as we thought and I think you would like them. I promise, they grow on you after awhile.

Other general updates/answers to questions. Yes the birds do come to the feeder above Oribel's head while she is hanging out under it. No, I have never seen them in the birdbath while she is under/next to that. Tonight a bird was very daring and was in the ground feeder for quite awhile with her just across the gravel area. I am not so sure that the rabbits are daring, but I do think they know the strength of their back legs. Seriously, if she tried to take on one of those rabbits, I think I would be making an emergency vet run. I've been kicked and bit by rabbits plenty in my life and I am fairly certain they are stronger than she is. I think they know it too and just enjoy torturing her. Plus they would probably leave her covered with fleas and she would bring those into the house. (Wonder if I could get someone to come help me flea bomb the house if she catches one?)
Tomorrow is the day I will be wading through airport security in The Cities to get Mr. A. So either tomorrow or Sunday I will be able to let you all know if his sweater fits. (I am sure it will go on him, it is really an issue of how much ease it has, vs. how much he wants.)

Thursday, August 7, 2008

A Finished Object(s)!

I have finally finished these socks, which makes me very happy, as I wanted to have them done before tomorrow morning. I had finished the first one awhile back and started the second, but it had been set aside to finish a few things, including the baby blanket, Hubband's socks, and such. Unfortunately, it is eleven at night and not the most conducive for pictures. I will get some FO photos up tomorrow for you.
I can give you some "not quite finished; 'Houston, we have a problem'" photos though. Do you see that yarn tail, coming off of the unfinished sock?

It is supposed to be attached to this ball of yarn.

This is how close to the end of the sock I was this morning when we had our problem. Want to make a guess what the problem was? Someone jumped up onto the bed where I was knitting, grabbed the ball of yarn, jumped down, and ran off into the hall before I could do much more than say, "Hey!" She then proceeded to bite the yarn in half while I was coming to retrieve it. Oh well, better than what Sadie did to the very first pair of socks I made. She climbed onto the middle of the bed, got the sock, pulled it off of two of the (four) needles, pulled out some stitches, and chewed on two needles, breaking one of them in half. Lucky for her, she got to live after that.

Not to worry, Someone lived through today's episode as well. Don't let her fool you though, she isn't as sweet and innocent as she looks. Have I ever mentioned that she gives life to the expression "Ankle Biter"?

Ravelympics update

Ummm, yep, I added knitted Pop Tart and hat to the stuff I have to get started and finished in the next seventeen days. 'Cause doesn't everyone need a knitted Pop Tart? (I think I should sign up for Team Overcommitted some of these projects.)

Ravelympics, Take Two

For those of you that may have been watching my Ravelympics queue, I realize it looks like I may have gone a bit crazy/overboard. For those of you that have no clue what i am talking about, here is a quick rundown. From the beginning of the opening ceremony of the 2008 Summer Olympics (7 AM tomorrow, my time-zone) until the end of the closing ceremony (I don't remember exactly when on the twenty-somethingth, I have time to figure that out), I have signed up to knit one pair of fingerless mitts, one chocolate rabbit, four Banana Slugs, and eleven dishcloths. I will also be working on some projects that have been languishing including two different pairs of socks (one of which have not been seen here before as I stumbled across them in a box in the basement and they are from I don't know when), a hat, and the second Dr. Who Scarf. Those last four items fall into the WIPWrestling Event, so don't actually have to be finished to count in the "crossing of the finish line" thing. (Everything else has to be cast on and bound off between the opening and closing events.) I will add in this craziness of mine, I will have a Mr. A here for most of the Olympics and will not be spending all of my time with him knitting. I will add that I can make a dishcloth in about two hours or less, and I am figuring about an hour per slug. The rabbit may take as much as three, and I have made the fingerless mitts twice now, so I have a pretty good idea of how long they will take. From there it is just a matter of working on stuff I want to finish up anyway. So it isn't as crazy as it might look (I think). So far I am on three different teams, Team Christmas at Sea, Team Browncoat, and Team Tardis. A couple of my items are teamless, if you have a suggestion of joining your team, let me know quick!
Oh, did I mention I am thinking about adding a hat and a Pop Tart into the new projects event queue? I have to decide and do it today before the sign-up deadline.
Now I need to go birthday shopping for someone who turning prime on Sunday.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The Mighty Hunter

Awhile back, I gave you a WoW post about Oribel checking out the birdbath. We have decided she can "roam the yard" as long as she has a chaperon/supervisor. She seems to have decided that there is not much need for a lot of roaming once the warm patio bricks have had a though rolling on. From there she slinks across the yard to hang out here under the feeder pretty much for hours if we let her. Last Thursday DTE and I were on the porch watching her be so distracted by a rabbit, she missed hearing the turkeys move in on her. It was amazing how flat and still she could make herself as soon as she realized those very large birds were only four feet away! After the turkeys left and she was able to return her attention to the rabbit, she decided that she would try to sneak up on it; DTE and I wondered if she knows that sneaking doesn't work very well when at least half of your tail is twitching. Poor Oribel would sneak forward toward the rabbit about six inches and the rabbit would move off by about the same amount. The rabbit continued to torture her in this fashion for fifteen or twenty minutes. I missed out on pictures of those adventures as my camera was in the house and I knew that turkeys, rabbit, and cat would all startle and run if I opened the door to go get it.

Fortunately on Saturday I had my camera outside with us when a rabbit zigzagged back and forth, getting closer to her with every move.

It is a bit hard to get really great pictures of stuff happening in the yard from the deck, especially when there is a birdbath in between the camera and the subject (they will biggify). She did a really great job of holding her tail still that night. Fortunately the rabbit still has the upper hand and remained uncaught. The Mighty Hunter does seem to be very good at catching flies, moths, and the stray grasshopper in the house though. Well, she catches them when she is awake.

Don't forget to check out the other cats via Mister Linky at Whiskers on Wednesday.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

We are working on the plans

for Mr. A's annual visit, starting next Saturday. There will be lots of cooking together (he has asked me to teach him how to make bread, tiramisu, and a few other things), most likely more camping and dog walking for starters. Last year I took him to Greece while he was here. This year I plan on taking on him on a trip far, far away as well as jumping to lightspeed with him. Going to have fun, we are.