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Friday, July 30, 2010

It Seems to Be Critter-week in my hallway...

Rescuing Geckos or even Wolf Spiders to put outside is one thing...when it comes to the poisonous critters, I'm not so kind-hearted.

CooPurr was finding something particularly interesting just under the throw rug at the entrance to our bedroom.
When kitties are staring at something fixedly and pawing at something I can't see - I go investigate.
Mostly it's been teeny, tiny bugs - gnats and such that come in with us from the outside.

I flick back the edge of the rug to look and - 
CRIMONY - it's a Bark Scorpion. Gheyahhhhhh!!!!

I jump back, the scorpion crawls a little more up on the carpet and CooPurr reaches out a paw ... {oy}. I pick up CooPurr so the scorpion will stay put and so I won't have to re-convince myself that cats have a natural immunity to scorpion stings (so says my Vet) - but Nikoli and Mikale are stepping in to see what's up!  Now Gryphon's running up the hallway to have a look too!
(Oh, yeah - they've never seen one of these before!)

I put down CooPurr, hop over the scorpion, going for my husband's side of the closet. Picking up the closest shoe there, I turn back around and start pounding on the scorpion, keeping in mind, when you bop them on carpeting, they usually bounce. The cats jump back, pretty sure Mom has lost it...

A creeped out KiniaCat, jumped up on adrenaline and armed with a Man's Size 11 work shoe can do some damage:
Um - one of his pincers is, uh, elsewhere....
(Hmmm - looks like I need to vacuum.)
 (Helpful Poisonous Critter-Slaying Hint - using the DH's very big shoes, means better reach/torque, more squashing-weight, and you don't have to be as close to the little nasty creepy-thing you're trying to slay.)

The DH and I have a deal.     
If I slay the noxious critters that wander into the house, 
he has to clean 'em up

No matter how squashed, mangled or in how many pieces they are - I'm pretty sure they're going to spring up, suddenly not quite dead, to run up my arm if I try to remove the body.
That and I don't like the crunchy/mooshy feel... {Shudder/Gah}

So I left the husband a voice-message that he has cleanup duty when he gets home.
(Come to think of it, I'm not sure I actually mentioned what he has to clean up...)

Usually the "sign" a cleanup is required, is one of his large shoes, out where it normally wouldn't be, with something flattened, and, uh, oozing, underneath. Sometimes the shoe sports a sticky-note "hint".
Tonight the cats won't leave it alone so I multiplied the "sign":

Which didn't work either...they keep pulling shoes off or the rug away!
So now there's a kitty condo sitting right there - in the entrance to the Master Bedroom. With cats staring at it....
(Ok, Gryphon's just there for the shoelaces...)

Of course, now all evening I'm just gonna feel like stuff is crawling on me and I'll keep wondering how many times did I walk past it/step over it...?!?! {Shuddder}   
Still - CooPurr is my hero! 
His curiosity saved me from getting too close for comfort 
and I am extremely grateful!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Sock progression and "He got to keep his tail!"

I mentioned in a previous post that I'd had a start-itis binge a few weeks ago and had cast on 4 pairs of socks (In the over-all sock tally, pairs #6 thru 9).
I've completed 2 single socks out of the 4 pair and completion of a 3rd single sock is on my horizon.
The friend for which I made Socks #5, gifted me with yarn credit at Grandma's Spinning Wheel (squee-Thank you!)!
I'd heard GSW had gotten more of the Flat Feet Sock yarn in, and I've been having great fun with seeing how the 1st one knits up so  I went shopping!
See - Pretty Pattern!! I'm quite tickled with the colors, although this picture doesn't do it justice!

Socks #10 are also going to a friend of mine in the Dublin Bay sock pattern. It's a HUGE sacrifice, but she's doing her part to help me deal with the scary-stash by letting me knit socks for her!
She fell in love with this bit o'my stash:
This was a unique gift from the creative folks at Lollipop Cabin. Earlier this year, they were reviewing the Ravelry Stash photos of their Organic Lillipop Cabin sock Yarn, picking a random "winner", and sending out gift yarn from their "experiment bucket". The pics of the yummy Organic Sock Yarn I'd got at the Sock Summit were selected and they gifted me with this lovely yarn they'd been experiment-dyeing upon.
My friend saw this yarn (Superwash Merino, Louet base yarn) and she HUGGED it - and me - and she jumped up and down whilst hugging me and the yarn. (I think she likes it.).
I must say - this is exactly her colors. Tomorrow, I measure her feet.

This little guy foolishly followed me into the house the other night:
(I have small hands - he's maybe two inches long - nose to tail-tip.)
(I need to put a wee sign at the very bottom of the door in very tiny letters: 
"Gecko Warning - Do not enter! Cats abound!) 
Luckily - CooPurr found him first.  I think CooPurr was simply confounded by the tiny critter and he hadn't gotten serious about "playing" with him yet.
I convinced the Gecko-critter to climb up on my hand so I could release him outside.

I'm a bit proud of my gentle rescue - he even got to keep his tail!
(It's the first line of Gecko defense - lose the tail to distract the attacker and escape while the tail is still wiggling in the attacker's mouth, paw, etc.)

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Skipping about

I recently realized that I'd been skipping about the edges of topics in the last few blogs and that you-all were getting stray comments instead of plot threads...so here's an attempt to fill in the blanks.

Kitty introductions:
When I said, "The kitty-dynamics are improving - just in the past week, I've only been awakened once or twice with hissing/growling." in the Blog-iversary blog, I was referring to how the Kitty Introductions went when we loosed the orange-tabby brothers from their quarentine in the Computer room.

We started letting Mikale and Nikoli out for supervised visits with Gryphon and CooPurr almost a week after the Saturday when they came to live with us. 

Friday night we let them out for a little bit at a time - there was some general hissing and growling which devolved into sniffing and hissing.
We let them out a little more Saturday until they were loose in the house all of Sunday and Monday and pretty much no hissing. DH told me that Gryphon gave Nikoli kitty-kisses on his head on Monday so I thought we were golden. 
Tuesday, there were minor but LOUD fisticuffs…the big sweetie cats Mikale and CooPurr had some kind of disagreement – of which I missed the specifics.
I did get to see Gryphon streaking down the hallway to jump into the middle of whatever had started and he escalated it. He and Mikale did a couple of laps around the living room yelling at the top of their lungs. Some fur did fly and then Mikale and Nikoli headed for the computer room and I rousted Gryphon (who was now even hissing at CooPurr, just ‘cause) out of the computer room and everyone got a break for a bit. I let everyone out about a half hour/45-minutes later and everyone was fine.  

Things have settled down some. Mikale and CooPurr take turns copping attitude on each other – only sometimes – and generally limited to hissing and the occasional swipe.
Gryphon only gets riled up when everyone else does. He’s been investing time, somewhat successfully, in trying to get Nikoli to play with him. 

The nights of being awakened every couple of hours by someone growling about something seem to be past. (Yep, I'm tempting fate typing that bit...). Everyone is familiar with the squirty bottle concept and they scatter when  I get up and arm myself to diffuse growling fits.  

Blog Stylings:
Back in this bit o'ranting, I made an "announcement" that I was gonna revamp the blog format! 
I did invest a fair bit o'time in playing with the available formats. 
However, I could not find format that made my little blogging heart sing.  

Pretty formats & fun shapes - but they didn't keep things partitioned nicely. 
Too streamlined ("what happened to my stuff??" {stuff = lists to the right of this verbiage}), too pink (ugh/shudder), too many polka-dots, or the color scheme didn't work with the  banner picture I use...yada, yada, yada. 
Hence - the effort was made but I found I still liked my original format best.
(And...yet...now Blogger is tempting me with a "New! Template Designer" feature. 
Well, heck yeah, I'm gonna go play with it! Some time or 'nother... )


The 5th pair of socks that I made for a friend - she loves them and THEY FIT!! Woo-hoo!!

And the 4 pairs of Socks I'm knitting on now...
Pair #6 - The "Lenore" Socks by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee in Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks that Rock Lightweight  "Raven Clan Corbie" colorway. 
Pair #7 - for my niece-in-law. I bought this yarn for her mom when I heard she was in the hospital. When I didn't get to give  my sister-in-law the yarn, I thought I could make socks for her daughter. 

The "Columbine Peak" Sock pattern by Cat Bordhi from Socks Soar on Two Circular Needles in Crystal Palace Panda Superwash Bamboo & Wool.

Pair #8 - The Eight of Diamonds" pattern by our own Purl's Knit Doctor, Tracy, in Steinbach Wolle Aktiv Effekt. 

Interesting sock pattern. 
Entrelac - love it!
I'm glad I did it, but it probably won't be an everyday pattern for me. 
The striping on this sock yarn is quite nifty. I'm thinking about getting one more skein. 

OK, I know the picture above looks a bit bizarre. 
Here's an on-the-foot picture so the sock concept can be more easily applied. 

Sock #9 - this one is all about the yarn. 

Well, not entirely - I am quite tickled with the Dublin Bay pattern I've been wanting to try for a bit. 

But the Flat Feet Hand-painted sock blank that I "rip"/un-knit in order to knit my socks is entirely tooooo fun.

I'll figure out what else I've been skipping and I expect more posts will follow.
For now, I'm off to do some knitting and Nikoli is "supervising" my computer time. 
I didn't see him fly up there, but there he is... 

Thursday, July 8, 2010

I guess Junk Mail doesn't taste as good...

I came home tonight to find the DH had brought the mail in from the mail box.
Cool. That was nice.
However, this is the "mail" I found on my desk.
It's kind of my own fault, really.
Earlier today, like 9 hours ago, I had foolishly said to someone at work that Gryphon's chewing habit seemed to have improved.
I know better than to tempt fate that way.
The rest of the mail was perfectly intact.
I guess Junk mail doesn't taste as good as movie-in-envelope.

Excuse me, I have to go tell the Netflix folks that the Cat Ate My Return Envelope.
I suspect this won't be the first time they've heard that excuse.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Happy Blog-iversary to me...Two Years

Another blog-year older
Wiser? Some. 
Better? I rather think so. 
Still Knit-geeky? Oh, yeah. 

So much has happened  it seems more like 2 years than just one year.
I didn't blog as much this year. I felt I needed to apply time to my local, but distant family after my sister-in-law passed away.
And...I fell off the work-a-holic wagon so there was a lot of time invested in the work-place. 

My niece and niece-in-law both got married. Another niece graduated from High School.
The DH and I are both blessed to still be gainfully employed.
Im still knitting (though not nearly enough to suit my knitting-yen). 

A year ago, I had just finished my 2nd pair of socks and had started on a 3rd pair. 
This week, I'm working on 4 pairs of socks (the results of severe start-itis) - which takes me up to my 9th pair. 

A few months ago, I had to let my BobCat go - his body wouldn't let him be comfortable anymore.  He still has my heart and I miss his purr. 

Recently, we adopted two orange tabby brothers that are definitely changing and enhancing our life.
The kitty-dynamics are improving - just in the past week, I've only been awakened once or twice with hissing/growling. {grin/yawn/whew!}

I am slightly less clueless about blogs and blogging. Maybe less naive? Less clueless seems a more apt description (but it might be a kind of double-negative. {wry grin})
I'm very behind on reading my favorite blogs and keeping up on Ravelry. Hmmmm. 
However, I have been reading more books. 

A year ago, I was on the Blue Moon Fiber Arts website for conciliatory yarn shopping because I couldn't get classes at the 2009 Sock Summit (sold-out). 
A little less than a year ago, I was invited to attend classes at the 2009 Sock Summit under the Lottery option
What an amazing adventure. And I got to go to the Barbara Walker lecture!
So many un-posted pictures and stories. {sigh/sorry}
Oy - such long-winded stuff that did get posted. (I suspect it's kinda like inflicting hundreds of vacation pictures on your friends...)
Locally, I got to take some spiffy classes from visiting knitting dignitaries!
In the last 6 months, I listened to A LOT of podcasts and got seriously knit-inspired. (Hence the start-itis!!)
I am working on improving myself emotionally, but have been neglecting myself physically. {tsk/sigh}

Its kind of odd looking at the past year blog-wise. I almost feel like I should make some resolutions or something
There are a lot of things I wish I had taken the time to blog about. 
Now, there's a proper Blog-iversary resolution for year 3.   
  • Blog more. Post more pictures. 
  • Catch up on my favorite blogs. 
  • Explore more new blogs!
  • Knit a real sweater!
  • Laugh more (easy with my current crew of monster-cats)!
  • Love more. Love myself more too. 

E-hug and blessings to you and yours. 
May we all have a stellar blog-year!