Monday, May 2, 2016

Cropped and cute

In knitting land, things are going well...
As you can see, the body of the cardigan is done. The bottom ribbing is an inch shorter than the pattern calls for. that's for two reasons:
1) I have a short waist
2) 1-1 ribbing is probably one of the most tedious stitch patterns. If I had to do a whole inch more of it, someone was going to end up stabbed with a knitting needle.

All that's left now is the sleeves and the front bands. I was tempted to knit the bands first to get them out of the way, but knitting with the handspun is just too much fun
So I've  split the remaining yarn into two balls, roughly equal in size. I'll knit until theyrun out, and add an inch of ribbing at the end.

But as much as I want to finish this cardigan up, I really do need to get back to those fox socks.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Race day

It's that time of year again. Yesterday I pickup Sam, and we headed off to the city so she could run, run, run, and I could sit and wait.
I think this year was the coldest of all the years. I took the cardigan so I could work on it while I was waiting for her to cross the finish line
But I only got a few rows done - my hands got too cold too quick.

Instead, I chatted up the locals
 ... and these hoodlums...
... and the most beautiful Mama swan.
She was such a sweetie, she even showed me her babies.
Daddy swan was keeping watch from the water.
... and soon enough, I caught sight of Samantha on her way to the finish line.
Just a few minutes more and...
... it was all over...
Until next year of course!

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Saturday sketches

Next to people, animals are one of the subjects I'm best at. So  I dug out the coloured pencils for this week's sketch and set to work.
The colours are a little off, and I'm even more out of practice with these than the regular pencils... but I think I got his little grump face down.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Friday Felines

A couple months ago, I bought Rocky a little pop-up tent. He'd had one a few years back and absolutely loved it. He didn't bother much with the new one, but someone else took a liking to it...

Which is really odd...
 Generally, she doesn't like to go inside things unless there are at least two exits
 She's rolled around and beat it up so much that now one of the "poles" pokes through the fabric.

I wake up every morning, and its never where I left it the night before
She seems to have forgotten that she's actually the oldest cat in the house - at almost 13 years old, she's a true senior cat.
Oops... sorry Peno, we won't talk about your age again.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Nursery time

As if a reminder that life goes on, things continue to grow in my little "nursery"
If I'm honest, my enthusiasm for the garden has waned a little with Rocky's passing. It's hard to get excited about planting knowing he won't be out there keeping an eye on me. I'm sure the feeling will pass and I'll feel better about it in a week or two. So I'll keep watering and tending.

All the Dollar store bulbs are doing great.
 The Dahlias are growing quickly. The will remain in these pots, and as soon as our frost date has past, they'll live on the back patio
The Irises, however, may need to go into the ground soon - frost date or not. They are getting too big for their pot. I started them in pots, just to save them from the squirrels. The last time I planted summer bulbs directly in the garden, the only thing that the squirrels didn't eat was the Gladiolus.
The Sparaxis is almost as big as the Irises
And the Anemones have these cool, curling leaves.

And check out my spinach sprouts!
That's some crazy looking spinach.

I know I told you about the surprise garlic in the garden, but I didn't mention that I planted some in a pot too.
I've read that garlic will do quite well in a pot if its deep enough, so we'll see.

Outside, the weather cooled a bit, so there's been no more blooms... just lots and lots of dandelions
But they still bring a smile...

Wednesday, April 27, 2016


Thank you to everyone for your kind words about Rocky. It's a testament to how big a part of my life this blog is when you're standing there after the vet gives you the news and leaves to let it sink in, and one of the thoughts that runs through your head is "How am I going to tell Ellen and Dee?" They are people who've never met me, never met Rocky, but their love for the furry boy came right through the computer screen.

And I apologize to anyone I made cry at work. I too read  blogs in the office between projects, and have found myself choked up over a post about a lost pet and struggled to regain composure before a coworker noticed and you have to explain that you're crying over an internet cat. I feel you - I totally do.

And as for life at the studio...
 ... it marches on. We're trying to adjust the best we can. These first days are always the hardest.

But, when life's got you down, there's only one thing you can do...
I realized I actually have more time than I thought to complete the Foxy sock, so the past few days I've only been working on the cropped cardi. I've just needed something mindless and meditative to get me through and colourwork was not it.
As a result.... well you can see for yourself. I've got a few inches to go before I start on the ribbing. The bottom ribbing will be done in the chocolate brown Barn Cat. Whatever is left of the handspun will be divided up to make the sleeves as long as I possibly can - at this point, I'm thinking they will probably end up as halvsies.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Rockster Weewiggles - 2007-2016

I am very sorry to have to share this with you, but yesterday morning, we had to say goodbye to our dear, sweet, fool of cat, Rocky.

I was a little concerned about him before the weekend, as he was constipated. It was an issue we'd had with him before, and since he was still eating and drinking, purring and screaming at me to let him outside every five minutes,  I wasn't overly worried.

That changed on Sunday night, his breathing was off and he wasn't quite himself. I got up first thing Monday morning to call the vet. He saw the same vet who did Tux's surgery, and she was quite alarmed by his breathing. After a full exam she gave me the bad news - his intestines were full of masses (which explained the reoccurring constipation), his right lung wasn't working, and the left one wasn't in good shape - whatever was in his intestines had spread. While we were talking, his breathing got even worse. We just didn't have any other options
He didn't have a long life - just nine years. But he had a good one - absolutely spoiled and loved. And in returned he taught me many lessons, the way only a cat can.

Persistence pays off
Dave was not happy to come home and discover I'd brought home another family member without consulting him. But Rocky's persistence, and sweetness soon won him over. No matter how much Dave tried to remain aloof and ignore him, he just couldn't. And when we had to say goodbye to Mopar, Rocky stepped up to comfort Dave, and quickly became "his" cat.

The squeaky wheel gets the grease
Rocky had no problem letting us know what he wanted, and that he wanted it RIGHT now. Whether it was outside, cat treats, or just a snuggle, if you speak up, you get it.

Always use the buddy system - especially around water.
It only takes seconds to drown (even in the tub), and you don't really need to poop alone - you never know what could happen.

Enjoy the simple things in life
A box is never just a box. A plastic bag makes a fantastic blanket, and tissue paper provides hours of fun.

It's not about the destination, it's the journey
And every failure teaches you something new. (Going to miss that bumwiggle this summer)

Sometimes, we all need to be pampered

And always, always soak it up when the sun is shining
Because life is short

I'm glad he got to see one last spring
And when we said goodbye and he breathed his last breath, it was by a big window, looking out on the spring flowers and robins.... with maybe a rabbit or two passing by in the field.

Good bye Rocky Boy
It was short, but oh so sweet.