"This fog is thick as peanut butter."

"You mean pea soup."

"You eat what you like and I'll eat what I like!"

- Yukon Cornelius and Hermey the Elf

Saturday, September 30, 2006

One Fine Day

On a particularly stressful workday last week, I walked out at lunchtime to get the mail and discovered that it was a gorgeous fall day, complete with warm sunshine. So I decided it was time for a break. This was my lunch spot.

This was my view. (I have got to take out that stupid basketball hoop.)

I even had some lunchtime entertainment. Zeke was lying peacefully on the grass a little ways away (because I was finished eating and there was no more food to beg for). You can't see it in this picture, but a very scary wooly bear caterpillar came crawling over towards him.

Zeke jumped up and sniffed frantically at it, then decided it was too dangerous and lay down several feet away. Unfortunately, he lay right in the path the wooly bear happened to be traveling in.
So up again, and move a few more feet.

Crisis averted.

Fear not, those of you who were beginning to hate me for my work-at-home-ness and my freedom to enjoy a luncheon outside on a fall day. Those days are officially over. This coming week I head to Baltimore to train someone to do my job, and the following week I start a brand new job at an actual building away from my home. Damnit!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

In Which Wendy Shows A Finished Object And Then Babbles About Some Other Stuff

Here I am, right on time!

So...a Finished Object for Mom's birthday. I had a lot of fun knitting this and I actually finished it in time. Yee hah!

This was a headband kit from Bea Ellis Knitwear, knitted in the round on circulars. The outer layer is Peer Gynt wool and the inner liner is cotton (I'm too lazy to get up and find the ball band, do you really care?)

This was my first successful attempt at stranded knitting (there were several interesting failures) and I'm fascinated by the back of the knitting.

Here it is having the daylights blocked out of it, with a rolled up towel stuffed inside. I thought that was pretty ingenious of me. Vicious blocking really helped smooth out the stitches.

More pics:

Finished wrong-side-out

The join, which I made no attempt to hide, but isn't too hideous, I think.

I would definitely buy from Bea Ellis again - the kit was well written and the Peer Gynt knit up very nicely. I can tell it's going to be warm. Mom likes wearing those headband things, but I need a gigantic hat to be warm enough. I might have the courage now to try one of those patterns.

On the war front: SOCK WARS has officially begun and the battle has started out rather bloody. Some particularly violent assassins actually finished their socks in 9 or 10 hours!! Monday morning will no doubt dawn with a rush on the USPS. In fact, the very first assassination was carried out in person on Sunday.

Ummm...I've got a couple of inches done on mine.... There were some technical difficulties at first, involving gauge, cuffs coming out too large, bear attacks, scorpions, an alien invasion, zombies, vampires...Oh wait, those are the movies I've been watching. What were we talking about?

Oh, the sock! It's actually coming along nicely now, seems to be a nice size, and I love this "rib of doom". Once the war is over, I may try the rib in some smaller sock yarn for myself. Picture of the deadly weapon (ie. sock) "tomorrow."

By the way, what the hell is this?

And why was it hanging from one of my trees? Are we being invaded by something?

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Visits To The Sick Ward, Part 2

So on Sunday, I promised to continue my tales of the visit with FU Tree on Monday. So now my secret's out - I'm a big liar! MUAH AH HA!

And I missed Talk Like A Pirate Day because I was really cranky and pissed off about some stuff. But wait a minute...isn't that rather a "piratey" thing to do? GARRRR!!! But I did get drunk and watch Pirates of the Caribbean for the 300th time. It just doesn't get old - fantastic movie! What really bothers me though, is how Disney can be so damned evil, but still make such kick ass movies? What gives? I guess the old wives tales about the devil having a silken tongue were pretty true.

Enough blabbering! Let's have some pictures!

This is good practice for FU, holding little dangling sock cuffs, because if he lives until December you can be damn sure he'll be wearing Christmas ornaments. Oh God. I really, really need a pink flamingo lawn ornament to put next to him. How perfect would that be??

Both of these will be frogged for various reasons, mostly because I'm too lazy to get gauge before starting and these wouldn't fit any human I know.

Let's see, and here's a sweater I started long ago and that WILL be finished....someday. This is Wendy's Essential Stripe from Knit and Tonic. Wendy writes a damn good pattern for beginner schlubs like me. I didn't even know what "raglan" was and had to look it up in the dictionary. Duh. But her pattern is so easy that this is actually coming out right! It fits me and everything! (I took it off the needles and put it on one night.) What stopped me was hiding the jog of knitting stripes in the round. For you non-knitters, knitting stripes in the round makes a spirally seamey thing that would not be attractive right down the front of a sweater. I know there are many, many techniques for fixing it, but I needed more practice to get it to work, and so the sweater is aging nicely in my knitting bag.

And I put a picture of these sweater sleeves on here before, but FU hadn't seen them, so I got them out again. Yup, no progress since....January? But I really want that sweater, so I'll finish someday. It's the cover sweater from this book:

I HAD to have this sweater, so I started it with only a deformed mitten and pair of acrylic socks under my belt. I have NO FEAR. I may be small, but I'm scrappy!

So that's it for the UFO's... I though there were some more, but I guess they were called back to the mother ship. There's a horrible mitten with a squirrel on it somewhere, but I have no idea where...

If you tune in "tomorrow" [wink, wink] I'll have a FINISHED OBJECT to show you! oooh aaahhhh!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Care of an Invalid

I'm concerned about the well-being of FU Tree, so I like to visit with him and try to keep his spirits up. I tend to poke at him, ask him not to die...you know, stuff like that.

My Interweave Knits (finally) arrived this weekend, and there is a sweet article in there about how wounded soldiers during WWII were taught to knit as therapy, and maybe to keep their minds occupied. So today I thought I would try to engage FU in some of my knitting.

First, I showed him some family heirlooms. My Great Aunt Lilian used to knit mittens for my Dad, his two brothers, and Aunt Eve. According to Eve, she would stuff the mittens with goodies every Christmas and give them to the kids. Many of the mittens are gone, having been used as they were intended, but several pairs survive.

And to my excitement, two pairs actually fit me!

Aren't they awesome? I only met Aunt Lilian once as a little girl, so I never got to hang out and knit with her. Too bad. I hear she was a pistol. We could have knitted and told each other dirty jokes or something.

Tune in tomorrow, when FU and I discuss some of my UFO's and I poke around in his branches looking for dead bits.

Thursday, September 14, 2006


(this post is best read with an exuberant Australian accent)

Here we are in the wilds of a New York State homeowner's living room! And we've just captured a very dangerous creature!

Look at this little milk snake, eh? HE'S A BEAUTY!! But don't let those cute little beady eyes fool ya - he's got a monstrous powerful bite....if you're a cricket, that is.

He was on his way across the living room floor, when I spotted him with my keen eyesight. I used my LIGHTENING quick reflexes to capture him and I've stuck him in this here casserole dish, so you can get a better look at him. Boy is he ANGRY!

Now I've attached some video footage of the little blighter attacking my finger. But beware, this is VERY graphic footage. Not for the faint at heart.

Now that we've got him good and angry, I'd better release him back into the wild. I found a nice little hosta plant outside my back door that should suit him nicely. Take care little fella!

**This post is dedicated in loving memory of Steve "The Crocodile Hunter" Irwin. RIP, dude.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Hmmm...What's this dusty old thing?

Oh! It's my blog!

Sorry to my 5 or 6 fans. :-) I've been too busy to write much lately. I have plans to bring out some UFOs (Un-Finished Objects) for general amusement and ridicule, but that involves cameras and picture taking and daylight, you know.

(And shhhhh! there's an FO coming soon too, but it's a secret. shhhh!! No really, that means you over there. Don't say anything!)

Sock Wars starts in a few weeks. Yay! I hope I'm up to it. But if not, I'll get killed with a pair of handmade socks, so you can't beat that!

For now, I'll leave you with pictures of the new miniature Christmas tree farm found just up the road a piece.

Ain't they cute?

I'm almost tempted to dig out my mini ornaments and stuff and set up little Christmas scenes....That would be weird, wouldn't it?

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

New Friends

Hi there!
Sooo.... Whatcha doin'?

Me? I'm knitting some socks.

These are so much fun. I'm starting to understand the allure of the lace and why so many bloggers are out there knitting shawls. Also, it's getting colder and I might need a wool shawl or two. Or 17.

I didn't have a screaming migraine tonight so I went to "Knit Club" which is a lot like "Fight Club" only it's mostly women and we don't fight and none of us have met Brad Pitt. Actually, I guess it's nothing like "Fight Club" at all. Although I never saw the movie. Do they sit around and knit after they beat each other up? I really love this group of gals (and one guy). I spent as much time giggling as I did knitting.

Now, I would like to introduce you to FU Tree.

FU Tree was so named in honor and remembrance of FU Chicken, who was loved and cared for by Lula's Mom. Both FU Tree and FU Chicken were....well....F*cked Up. Both led hard lives and bore the scars to prove it.

Poor FU Tree was knocked over while Mom and Dad's new driveway was put in. It was an unavoidable tragedy, but a tragedy nonetheless. FU lay at a pathetic angle, several branches broken off...and Zeke walked up and peed on him.

*This photo was not choreographed. Zeke enjoys urinating on FU Tree.

And, truth be told, I think I may have flipped FU Tree off once or twice as I drove away, just for the fun of it. Not with anger, you understand...just a little sick humor. But FU was determined to live, and my love for him grew, even as he bent himself at a right angle searching for the sun, glistening with dog pee pee.

So I dug his pathetic ass up, shoved him in the trunk of my car, and hauled him home.

As Christmas trees of days past have taught me, we'll have to wait about a month to see if I killed him or not. Hold on FU. Hold on.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Organic is as organic does.

I don't know what that means. I never really understood the original line either.....I guess I'm the "stupid does."

Anyway, if you have a chance, please go HERE and read this post. This is a very awesome knitting blog, by the way, but today she's talking about something a little different.

A similar vein of conversation has been rattling around in my head for a while. I haven't really been blabbering on about "An Inconvenient Truth" partly because it would probably be pretty boring to read about how I'm trying to recycle and save gas, blah, blah, blah. It's important, but not that newsworthy. But I have been making attempts at this, and getting stymied in several places.

For instance, the grocery store. I want to buy local and buy organic....But if you went to the link above, you can see that it's getting increasingly hard for anyone to figure out what that means. There is quite a bit of "organic" produce at the Hannaford grocery store near me, but I swear, each cucumber and apple is INDIVIDUALLY SHRINK WRAPPED AND IS SITTING ON A STYROFOAM TRAY. What the F??? And which is worse - a tomato from the next state over soaked in pesticide, or an organic tomato lovingly grown without pesticides, sung to by an opera singer, polished with the finest chamois cloth, and then stuck on an 18 wheeler that gets 10 miles per gallon and runs over 2 groundhogs, a prairie chicken and a stray dog on the way to a grocery store on the opposite side of the country? I don't know what to buy. Either way I'm going straight to hell.

I spend a lot of time wandering around and around and around the produce section of the grocery store, muttering to myself. People are starting to stare.

In other news, I found an awesome website for recycling stuff: earth911.org.You can type in your zip code to find options near you, or type in the article of interest that you desperately want out of your house, but don't want to send to a landfill.

Despite appearances, I have been knitting.

See this little red pile of crap?

I've knit this same little cuff of a sock 14 times over the past week or so. I got totally inspired by these frickin' awesome kneehigh socks that January One has been knitting. Her photography is spectacular too, by the way. Can you see how easy it is to get addicted to some of these blogs? Her banner at the top changes - keep flipping back in for more pictures.

Anyway, I've been so inspired by these knee highs, and actually waiting with baited breath to see how they progressed, that I couldn't stand it any more. Especially since I have several skeins of my own Socks That Rock burning a hole in my stash. And I swear, I actually made a gauge swatch and everything. Did all the math in the pattern (even though I hate math, especially math I'm not getting paid to do) but somehow the cuff came out more than 20 stitches too big. And now that I have the sizing right, it's all uneven and laddery and stuff. So screw it. I'm going to hide this under the couch and start one toe up. Maybe that will work.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Survey Says!

I hope this isn't too much of a blogging cop-out, but I got another survey and I think these are way fun. If you think they're fun and want to play, send me an email or somthin' with yours. Or put it in your blog, if you have one, obviously. :-)

1. FIRST NAME: Wendy
2. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? Not officially, but I was told the idea came from the name of my Dad's ex-girlfriend. Hello? Eew? But I like my name anyway, so the parents didn't traumatize me too much.
3. WHEN DID YOU LAST CRY? Tues, Aug 29th. After the migraine nap, I downloaded the Brian Williams Katrina special from iTunes. It was a cry of rage, believe me. Don't get me started on the bush and the brown-noser.
4. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? No, it's horrible. Blame it on computers...
5. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCH MEAT? Roast beef (me too, Eve!)
6. KIDS? not human ones...
7. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU? I hope so. Does anybody answer "no" to this?
8. DO YOU HAVE A JOURNAL? you're looking at it
10. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS? Nope. Good riddance, ya little bastards!
11. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? Yes...but I'd rather sky-dive or hanglide first
12. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL? It changes, but right now, Fruit Loops
15. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM FLAVOR? green chocolate chip mint
16. SHOE SIZE? 7 1/2
17. RED OR PINK? Red
18. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVORITE THING YOU LIKE ABOUT YOURSELF? I'm too shy and I miss out on a lot because of it
19. WHAT DO YOU MISS THE MOST? my friends and family back home
20. DO YOU WANT EVERYONE TO SEND THIS BACK TO YOU? No, I don't want to know anything about my friends (see number 9)
21. WHAT COLOR PANTS AND SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? Blue pants, brown shoes. Very original
22. LAST THING YOU ATE? french onion soup, asiago turkey sandwich and chai tea latte from Panera. YUM!
23. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? A purring cat, the dog chewing on a "chewie" and a little bird saying "wendy? wendy? WENDY!!"
25. FAVORITE SMELL? wood smoke
29. FAVORITE DRINK? That changes too - right now it's raspberry flavored diet ginger ale
31. HAIR COLOR? blonde
32. EYE COLOR? Blue
34. FAVORITE FOOD? cholesterol
35. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDING? scary - except I can't watch them anymore, now that I live alone in the woods
36. LAST MOVIE YOU SAW? Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" in the theater, Lord of the Rings pt. 2 at home
38. SUMMER OR WINTER? summer
40. FAVORITE DESSERT? Ok, DON'T freak out. I like to eat doritos together with little Nestle chocolate chips.
43. WHAT BOOKS ARE YOU READING? Oh boy. Are you ready?
"Eldest" by Christopher Paolini, but I only have like 10 pages to go
"I Saw Ramallah" by Mourid Barghouti
"Arthur and George" by Julian Barnes
"An Inconvenient Truth" by Al Gore
"Folk Socks" by Nancy Bush
44. WHAT'S ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? I don't have one. My mouse is on my "exploding laptop"
45. WHAT DID YOU WATCH LAST NIGHT ON TV? downloaded episodes of "Eureka" and "Three Moons Over Milford"
46. FAVORITE SOUND? the song of a wood thrush. Seriously, it makes me cry
49. DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL TALENT? Aside from the naked baton twirling, you mean? Oh - I just figured out how to whistle really loud, so that's pretty annoying.
50. WHEN AND WHERE WERE YOU BORN? Baltimore, Maryland 1973