Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Spoiled little birthday girl!

As of today, I have officially made 38 trips around the sun without managing to cause too much irreparable harm to myself! And I'm feeling pretty good... over the last few days, I've been absolutely spoiled.

At the end of November, Dave asked me what I needed for my birthday (he's always so practical). The truth was, other than a car... I don't really need anything. But when the Black Friday buy 2 get 1 free sale popped up on Charmed Aroma, I asked if he wouldn't mind picking out a couple of candles.

If you've never seen them, they are great big scented double wick candles with a piece of jewelry hidden inside. You burn them down until your prize (wrapped in foil) is revealed. Apparently you can win a piece worth up to $5,000 but most of it is just nice sterling silver costume jewelry. They  give you an appraisal code that reveals the "worth" of item. While I think their "appraisals" are highly over-valued, the jewelry is pretty, the candles smell really nice, and it's a heck of a lot of fun! I've spent the last week burning my candles day and night to get my prizes...
I also got a pretty white tear-shaped stone pendant, but it was still in the candle when I took this picture.

Mom wasn't supposed to get me anything else, because she'd already given me some money towards a new dishwasher, but when Burt and I stopped by after his vet appointment on Saturday, she had a gift bag for me.
More of her gorgeous handspun, and some much needed quilting tools!

Yesterday afternoon, I went to the mailbox and there was my prize from the I ❤ Fall KAL!
500 yards of the most divine merino/bamboo I've ever felt, a fun little button and some cute animal bum stitch markers! Thanks so much Vera!

My paperwhite have also started to bloom, just in time for my birthday!
 And they smell so strong! They are the dining room and you can smell them as soon as you get anywhere near the room!

And last, but definitely not least... the best birthday present of all...
Baby Burt is back in business. He's eating on his own again (and bugging me for a little of whatever I'm eating) his energy levels are back up to MAX, and we seem to have put the worst behind us! I couldn't ask for more than that!

And before I forget - time to share some of this love.... the winner of the 10 year blogaversary give away - Jocelyn!!!! I'll email in a little bit to get your details. Congrats!

Monday, December 11, 2017

I like big blocks

Thanks for all your well-wishes for Burton. We had a very rough morning yesterday when I woke up and Burton had completely regressed. In fact, he was worse than before I took him to the vet. I syringe fed him and fretted about whether or not to take him to the emergency vet. But after some food, and a good long sleep, he seemed to bounce back. By late afternoon he was eating on his own  and alert again. Here's hoping it sticks!

Now onto business!

As you know, before I start any new quilting projects, I'm on a quest to assemble all tops for the projects I currently have on the go.

With Chocolate Covered Pinwheels done, and Deep Sea Stars stalled until I can get more fabric, the only ones left were the Bear Paws, and some fall-coloured HSTs I haven't shown you yet.

To be honest, I'd been putting assembling the Bear Paws off. I'd already had some trouble with them. And I'd planned to assemble them on an angle, which made the process seem so much more daunting.  But in the end, I sucked it up, and much to my surprise, it was together in about an hour, with nary a problem!
It helped that the paws are nice and big (about 11" square) and there are only 12 of them. Squaring them up helped even more, though like the stars, they lost a few of their sharp points (though not nearly as badly as the stars.

Since the paws are on point, I'm calling this one Woodland Ballet.  Like the Sea Stars, this one is going to be a queen size quilt, and I want Mom to quilt it. Unlike the Sea Stars, it's much bigger, so it won't require as much sashing. I also have a quite a few coordinating fabrics set aside for this one. So you may see the top done before Christmas, but the finished quilt will have to wait until sometime in the new year

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Worry -Burt

One of my pets names for Burton is Burty-Burt. But this past week, it's been Worry Burt.

All seemed well after the neuter surgery, and as you know, by Monday he was back to his normal, silly, naughty self.

But Thursday, things changed. Actually it was Wednesday night when I first notice, but I told myself I was probably imagining things. It wasn't until Thursday morning, when Dave - who never worries about the cats like I do - said "Is it just me, or is Burton a little lazier than normal?", that I really started paying attention.

And it was true, while not completely lethargic, he definitely wasn't full of his usual spunk. Then he threw up. Just bile. And then it clicked in that he hadn't eaten breakfast with the others. So I spent most of Thursday watching his every move. He was still perky and alert, and would come when called. But he wouldn't play fetch, or chase Rupert or Relic. He was using the litter box fine. And he was drinking water. But he wouldn't eat anything. Not his cat food, not treats,  I couldn't even tempt with some of the roast chicken I had for dinner. He came to bed with us that night as usual, but he didn't keep us up by playing in the curtains, or chasing Dave's feet under the blankets.

And Friday morning, he continued to refuse food of any kind. I called the vet and made and appointment for the next morning.

So Saturday morning, he trotted into the carrier like the good little boy he is, and we were off again on a car ride. If he suffered any trauma from his previous trip, it didn't show. In fact, he fell asleep halfway to the vet's office.

The vet could find no obvious reason for him to stop eating. His incision was healing nicely, there were no issues with his teeth, he had no fever. Other than being a little dehydrated (not surprising), he seemed perfectly healthy. She said it could possibly be a side effect of the vaccinations he received.

She gave him some subcutaneous fluids for the dehydration, an appetite stimulant, and some special food to entice him to eat and sent us home with instructions that if didn't eat on his own, I had to feed him by syringe. And if nothing improved by Monday, he'd have to come back for bloodwork and further diagnostic.
 I bought him a new stuffie to cheer him and we came home. At first he turned his nose up at the new food too. So I gave him some time to rest, then mixed up a slurry of food and water and managed to get one syring in him before he let me know in no uncertain terms, he wasn't going to put up with that!

I decided to give him another break, and not long after, he went to dish on his own and started eating. It wasn't much, but it was huge progress. Then a little while later, he did it again.Then again even later. Then next thing I new, he was in the kitchen eating his regular food.

So hears hoping it sticks, even after the appetite stimulant wears off.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

FO: Tree Delivery cowl

YES!!! At long last!!!! It is complete!
I finished it up Monday night, but blocking took a while because of the double thickness.
As you know, I used the Tree Delivery water bottle cover pattern and turned it into a cowl. The revisions were pretty basic - I cast on three times the amount of stitches (288) worked a couple rows of garter to start, and  then worked the chart three times each round.
The colourwork went fairly quickly, but that decision to add a lining made the project a total slog. That said, adding a lining was the right thing to do... not only does it cover up all the unsightly floats, and protect from the itchiness of the handspun, it makes it doubly thick and doubly warm!

If I was smart, and had thought about the need for a lining when I started, I would have done a provisional cast on to make attaching the two ends easier. In the end, I just picked up stitches on the inside of the first garter border, and did a three needle bind-off between that and the lining stitches.
 It ended up working out quite tidily, if I do say so myself.

It's a good size, long enough to hang loose on warmer days...
 ...and just enough to wrap around twice when the wind is up.
 In the end, it's the perfect cowl!

Friday, December 8, 2017

Friday Felines

Although he's not going to give up his outdoor privileges, he definitely knows there's an upside to having a warm, dry place to enjoy a waning sunbeam.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Oakville beginnings

First... thanks for all who entered the Blogaversary contest. I'm sorry, you won't get Rupert in the surprise box either!

Now...With the heavy boot socks done and dusted, it was high time to get back to the On the GO designs. On the weekend I caked up a nice skein of red/brown/orange. It was dyed by Miss Paisley, and she called it Mad Hatter.
This stop is Oakville, and I'm using a modified Fir Cone stitch pattern for a nice, simple lacy sock.

I'd like to say this one will fly off the needles... but I don't want to jinx myself!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Three cheers to 10 years

It's hard to beleive, but it has been a decade since I started this blog. That's a lot of cats and craftiness!

To celebrate, let's have a little contest. Just leave a comment on this post  and on Dec 12 (my birthday!) I'll announce a winner, and send them a beautiful box of wonderfulness!
Okay... it won't be Burton! I love him too much to give him away... but I promise, it will be full of all kinds of fantastic surprise goodies.

Good luck!