Category Archives: cat(s)

An optimist stays up until midnight to see the new year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves. ~ Bill Vaughan

Before I bid 2007 a fond farewell, let’s take a quick look at what I knit during this year. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was fond of knitting pairs this year…..

A pair of blankets:

A pair of unfortunate felted items:

Two pairs of fingerless mitts:

A pair of hats (and then realized I hate to knit hats):

Sing it with me…..FIVE KNITTED SCARVES……

And finally (drum roll, please), thirteen pairs of socks!

I don’t set goals (knitting or otherwise) for the new year, but my current knitting plan is to finish my Central Park Hoodie:

It’s New Year’s Eve and I am very happy to bid goodbye to 2007. In regards to the quote in this post’s title: tonight, I will staying up to make sure 2007 leaves. There’s no two ways about it. This year has sucked. It has been the worst of my life.

I said goodbye to my Michigan Kitty and to my Once In A Lifetime dog. I miss both of them every single day. However, I can look at pictures/videos of them and smile. I’m so lucky to have had such wonderful animals in my life.

Also this year, I learned that the disease that struck down Max is also stalking Samantha. Samantha is doing okay. The recent bout of cold weather has been tough on her, but hopefully it warms up soon.

I’ve been battling hip and back problems for most of this year. However, there is some good news about this. My hip problems have completely healed. My back problem, however, will likely continue for the rest of my life. But, there is good news about this (really). To keep my back pain at bay, I have to work out every other day. I never would have predicted this. I am soooo not a ‘working out’ kind of girl, but it keeps me out of pain, so I do it religiously. I don’t enjoy it (in fact, I hate nearly every second of it), but I do it and I feel fantastic.

There have been other horrible things that have happened this year (which I haven’t blogged about). Thankfully, there are good things happening as a result of these bad things, too.

I am hopeful that 2008 will not just be a lot better than 2007, but will be a fantastic year.

A dog owns nothing, yet is seldom dissatisfied. ~ Irish Proverb

Thank you to everyone who took the time to send a comment and/or email in response to my last post. All of your kind words were very comforting and I appreciate each word and the time it took to send them.

I also want to thank the people who emailed to ask me if I was okay (since I’m not posting much anymore). I am okay. The lack of posting is due to a lack of time and nothing else. My life has become very busy lately and knitting time is rare. I usually only knit on the weekend. The lack of knitting has led to the lack of blogging.

I must apologize for this being a blog of doom and gloom this year. It seems like 2007 is throwing everything it has at me and I’m afraid that it’s not stopping anytime soon.

This morning, Samantha was diagnosed with degenerative myelopathy. Long time blog readers may remember that I’ve been down this road before and that this road doesn’t have a happy ending.

I don’t think there’s a good side to this, but I am grateful for two things: I am grateful that Max and Sam did not have the disease at the same time. And, I’m grateful that the disease didn’t show itself in Samantha until her later years.

Other than that, this just sucks. But, I know what we’re facing (which I didn’t know when Max and I walked this road) and I’m ready to take it on. Mostly, I’m just going to continue being the best damn dog mom I can.

Here’s a recent picture of Sam and her bunny:

Shortly after I took this picture, Sam eviscerated the poor bunny, but we don’t need to talk about that, do we? :)

Another sad goodbye.

Parker

Adopted: February 1997

Died: November 10, 2007


In February 1997, I was living in Michigan and my only pet was a cat named Simon. Simon was an insanely social cat and this sociability included waking me up several times during the night because he wanted to play. I tried everything I could think of to stop him from doing this, but I realized that he probably needed a friend.

So, I set off for the local humane society in search of the perfect friend for both of us. I was drawn in by a handsome, tiger striped cat named Parker. He was 3-4 years old and he seemed perfect.

Simon and Parker hit it off almost immediately. They became constant companions and playmates. Most importantly, Parker’s arrival meant that Simon no longer woke me up during the night to play. Instead, I would sometimes wake up at night and hear the two of them tearing all over my apartment.

However, Parker and I did not hit it off immediately. He was the stereotypical cat: standoffish and totally not interested in human interaction. If I even tried to pet him, he would immediately run away. I chalked this up to not being settled in my home and figured he’d come around in a few weeks or months.

I was wrong.

The weeks turned into months and those months turned into years. Still, I didn’t feel like I even knew this cat. I loved him and provided a great home for him, but I was obviously just his landlady. Parker tolerated no petting and picking him up was out of the question. In fact, if I just looked at him he would usually slink away and hide.

I gradually became used to this arrangement. I had two cats: one of the cats adored me and the other one hated me. It became normal and before I knew it six years had gone by.

In November 2003, Simon suddenly became ill and died. The day after Simon died, Parker started yowling. It was obvious that he missed his buddy and I assumed that he would get used to being alone and settle into a new routine.

Again, I was wrong.

After three weeks of all night yowling (I am not kidding: I didn’t sleep more than a couple hours at a time), I decided that Parker needed a friend. I made the trip to the Humane Society and came home with Romeo.

Romeo and Parker were instant friends:

When Romeo moved in, something else happened and it was amazing. Parker suddenly became very affectionate and loving towards me. It’s almost like he had to stake his claim on me before the new guy could.

Overnight, Parker began meowing at me on a regular basis. When I called his name he would come running. He loved to sit next to me and rub against me, asking to be petted.

The transformation was startling and I loved it. Finally, I was getting to know this cat and he was pretty fantastic.

Over the last four years, Parker made up for all that lost time. When I arrive home from work, the dogs come running and right behind them was Parker. He would then follow me from room to room as I changed, cooked dinner and settled in for the night. He would meow the whole time and as soon as I sat down, he would jump up and settle in beside me.

Parker was never a lap cat and rarely tolerated being picked up. However, he would usually sleep on the couch next to me, pressed against my leg. He also loved to sit behind me on the back of the couch and survey his kingdom. He was very vocal and would often meow at me. If I didn’t respond, he would meow louder and louder until he got a response. During the warm months, he would spend hours looking out the back door:

Parker and I (literally) came a long way together: we moved from Michigan to Colorado. He also saw the arrival of three dogs into this household (and expressed his displeasure with each one of them). He transformed from a standoffish cat to one who demanded attention all the time. He was perfect.

Parker’s death was sudden and unexpected. However, he had a great life and was one hell of a cat. I’m honored to have known him.

 

Mistakes are the portals of discovery. ~ James Joyce (1882 – 1941)

Before the last month, I had successfully felted five items.

In the past month, it’s felting: 2. Me: 0.

Kitty Pi

What: Kitty Pi

Yarn: Lion Wool in Rose, Ebony, Winter White and Cadet Blue; Festive Fur in White
Needles: size 10

Pattern: Kitty Pi

Date started: 9/1/07

Date finished: 9/3/07

Lesson Learned: I really, really hate knitting with fun fur.

Destination: The kitties

 

 

This is the first time I’ve knit with fun fur and I HATED it. But, I think it fits for this project, so it was worth it.

 

I expected the sides of the bed to start going up at the second repeat of blue. Instead, they started before that, at the pink part. No amount of stretching and blocking could fix this problem. As a result, the bed was much, much too small. I’m not sure where the pattern went wrong, but it went very wrong.

 

So, I cut the bed up and it’s now a kitty mat. I have more wool in my stash so I may try making a kitty bed of my own design.

 

Speaking of kitties, here’s Parker, keeping watch on the neighborhood:

 

 

Here are two sunsets, taken on two different evenings:

 

 

Feel the fear and do it anyway. ~ Susan Jeffers

Lately, I’ve been quite fond of garter stitch.

Here’s a new scarf:

I’ve also picked up a project that’s hasn’t been seen in almost a year:

Romeo loves his cave:

Kishka was very cooperative during a photo shoot earlier today:

Until she got bored:

Sadly, there has been another murder around here. And this time, there was a witness:

Is there anything lovelier than a summer afternoon?:

Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes. ~ Oscar Wilde

My to-be-felted bag was a very enjoyable knit and then I grafted the handles and tossed it in the washing machine.

How very quickly things can go so very wrong:

Felted Bag With No Name

What: Felted Bag With No Name

Yarn: 6 skeins of wool from stash
Needles: size 15

Pattern: My own.

Date started: 7/13/07

Date finished: 8/15/07

Lesson Learned: I’m an idiot.*

Destination: Place mats and coasters

* The most glaring defect to me is that the bag looks like a bra. I don’t know about you, but I don’t wish to carry a bag that looks like a bra. I don’t even like to wear the dang things and I don’t want a bag that looks like one!

*The bag shrunk in height: A LOT more than I anticipated. Still, I could have salvaged the bag except I grafted the handles incorrectly. I should have grafted the two handles on the same side of the bag, not the two handles on opposite side of the bag.

:: bonks self in head ::

What makes this so horrible is that I triple checked the handles before I started grafting to make sure I was grafting the correct handles.

Obviously, when I began grafting I had my head up my ass. And apparently it was up there so far I could have licked my own tonsils.

Ugh.

I will salvage what I can from this monstrosity. I plan to get out the scissors and cut the bag up into place mats (for the animal dishes) and coasters (for me, obviously).

Moving on….

There’s another FO in the house and I’m very happy with this one:

Angel Blanket #1

 

What: Angel Blanket #1*

Yarn: 1.85 skeins (3 oz. size) Caron Simply Soft in the color white
Needles: size 9

Pattern: Overlapping Waves from the Big Book of Knitting Stitch Patterns, page 209

Date started: 7/30/07

Date finished: 8/16/07

Size: 17.5″ x 18.5″

Lesson Learned: None. A quick, easy, enjoyable knit.

Destination: Warm The World

 

* Warm The World is partnering with a local funeral home to provide these blankets to families who have lost a baby to stillbirth or shortly after birth.

 

 

 

There is also a new blanket on the needles:

 

The summer of gorgeous weather continues here:

Samantha enjoys some outside time (again with her trusty tennis ball):

Kishka, a.k.a. Miss Priss, did not come outside and instead sat just inside the house:

Kish would rather sleep on my bed:

Finally, the very handsome Parker: surveying his kindgom:

Friday’s Feast:

Appetizer
Describe your laundry routine. Do you have a certain day when you do it all, or do you just wash whatever you need for the next day?
I do laundry when I run out of something. I usually wash a load or two a week.

Soup
In your opinion, what age will you be when you’ll consider yourself to truly be old?
85.

Salad
What is one of your goals? Is it short-term, long-term, or both?
Long term – keep up my walking routine with the dogs.

Main Course
Name something unbelievable you’ve seen or read lately.
The husband killing woman in Tennessee walked out of jail after serving just seven months. Seriously…what the hell is wrong with our justice system? If a man served that amount of time for killing his wife, this country would be an uproar. Why on earth is she catching a break? She didn’t kill him in self defense. Her ass should be in jail for the rest of her life.

Dessert
On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest, how happy are you today?
8.

When all is said and done, the weather and love are the two elements about which one can never be sure. ~ Alice Hoffman, ‘Here on Earth’

This past week has been amazing for a weather geek like me.

There have been gorgeous, sunny days:

Thunderstorms rumbling across the prairie:

Storms at sunset:

Stray thunderstorms in the middle of an otherwise gorgeous day:

A double rainbow (this was a full double rainbow, but I couldn’t get a shot of the whole thing):

The clouds in the eastern sky have also been gorgeous at sunset:

Samantha has been spending a lot of time hanging out in the yard with her trusty tennis ball at her side:

Romeo has started sleeping on his back. It’s adorable as hell and I’ve been trying to get a picture of it, with limited results:

Kishka has been enjoying the window AC unit:

And just looking generally adorable:

This week’s feast:

Appetizer
What is your favorite kind of pie?
It’s a tie between pumpkin pie and peanut butter pie.

Soup
Name something that made you smile this week.
Yesterday afternoon I was driving down the highway, iPod playing my favorite songs and admiring the big, puffy, white clouds against the bright blue sky. It was a perfect moment.

Salad
What do you do to cool off when the weather is hot and humid?
It’s rarely humid here, but when it’s hot (which it is right now), I like to park myself in front of my window AC unit. I have a chair that sits right in front of it and when I sit there it cools me off immediately.

Main Course
You receive $1,000 in the mail with a letter that says you can only use the money to redecorate one room in your home. Which room do you pick, and what do you buy to spruce it up?
I rent, so I wouldn’t spend the money on paint or anything I had to leave behind. I’d use the $1000 towards a new bed. (Yes, that’s boring, but it’s what I would do.)

Dessert
Fill in the blank: My _________ says __________, but I __________.
My blog title and header says it’s a knitting blog , but I post more about the weather and my animals than knitting.

Here is the knitting. This is a knitting blog. Really.

The Perseid Meteor Shower is this weekend. I can’t wait.

The palest ink is better than the best memory. ~ Chinese Proverb

The heat wave has finally broken. I’ve been knitting on my (to be felted) bag:

There were thunderstorms in the area last night:

Romeo actually cooperated during a photo shoot earlier today (he usually closes his eyes and refuses to look cute):

Parker also cooperated (he usually likes to head butt the camera):

While this photo shoot was going on, Kishka kept a close eye on the action from the hallway:

The Feast:

Appetizer
Describe a toy you remember from your childhood.
The Sit ‘n Spin. I loved that toy. It was light blue and I used it so much that I broke off the handle. Now, however, I am old: if I even think about spinning around like that I feel like getting sick.

Soup
On a scale of 1 to 10 (with 10 being highest) how observant are you?
7 or 8. As my father often tells me : “Always be aware of your surroundings”.

Salad
Where would you rather be at this very moment?
Actually, I’m pretty happy with where I am at this very moment: on my couch with my dogs asleep at my feet.

Main Course
When was the last time you learned something new?
Yesterday, in physical therapy. I learned new ab exercises using the exercise ball.

Dessert
Fill in the blank: I have ____________ but I haven’t ____________.
I have the yarn but I haven’t knit any hats yet.

Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet. ~ Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Well, the good news is that my twisted pelvis is no longer twisted. The bad news is that I also have a disc problem, so my restrictions continue.

This is how I spend the majority of my time:


The Pink Clouds socks are making progress:

A thunderstorm passed to the north of me a few days ago:

Here’s my girls:

Miss Kish:

Here’s Samantha with her poor stuffed bunny. The bunny spent almost a week outside before she brought it back inside:

Parker (the porker):

And, last but not least, shy Romeo:

Today’s Feast:

Appetizer
Fill in the blank: The best thing about where I live is _________________…

The best thing about where I live is the wide open spaces, the bright blue sky and sunshine nearly every day.

Soup
Create a new name for a deodorant (like “Flower Fresh” or “Shower Scent”).

What the hell kind of question is this? Like many things, the names of deodorant are just silly. So, I’d go in the other direction and name a deodorant Public Jackass.

Salad
What was the last piece of software you installed onto your computer?

QIF to Excel to OFX Converter.

Main Course

If you were to receive a superlative award today beginning with the words ”Most likely to…”, what would the rest of the phrase say?

That’s easy. Most likely to have spent the most time on her couch in the last month.

Dessert
What two colors do you like to wear together?

Pink and grey. Yes, I’m still stuck in the 80’s.

If you’ve made it through this long post, you are rewarded with a most undignified picture of Kishka:

Dogs and cats and yarn, oh my!

I’m still knitting socks, but haven’t taken any pictures, so I shall distract you with critter pictures.

Kishka has been looking very photogenic lately:

Samantha isn’t fond of sharing her stuffed toys:

The girls have been hanging out together:

Parker with a determined look on his face:

Samantha keeping an eye on things (she’s watching out the front window in this pic):

And Romeo, hiding his gorgeous blue eyes:

Next up on the needles:

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