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July 2008
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September 2008

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Hezekiah wants to know:

  • Who wrote the best book you've read lately?
  • What is the meaning of life?
  • Why were you last happy?
  • Where would you rather be?
  • When is the time of your life?

(and WTH is wrong with Typepad NOW?)

Birthday Bonanza

Blogsummer08 007_edited Somewhere there's a picture of me with this cake that my mom made but I'll be hanged if I can find it.

Cool, no? I love that cake even if I do not love coconut lion mane hair.

Animal Cut Up Cakes - the source of all birthday cakes and my idea of extreme cake decoration - until,  you know, Colette's Cakes. Ace of Cakes. Cake Wrecks. (Blame Chris for that one.) 

My Mom cleaned out her cookbook shelves last month and unearthed this gems. (Oh, there were more. Much more. Come to think of it, they're in my trunk. I was supposed to  take them to the bookstore as trade-ins....) Never fear, the Eggplant, Coffee, and Peanut Butter Cookbooks from Nitty Gritty remain in my possession. (No, thats not one cookbook! Although a perfect combination, don't you think?)

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But for this birthday it was Apple Pie (Sunset?) in the mail from the aptly named Mistress Stash Enhancer. Aren't those colors gorgeous? I just need a pattern. Pray for non-pooling.

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Another package that came  was from my swap buddy of the August Birthday Swap of 2006, Rebecca of Yarninaround. Finally someone who is worse than me at getting to the Post Office. But boy howdy, did she go all out. Patterns, two really cute hand knit pouches, a trio of trio yarns, Mandalay in gray,  STR, a sock blocker key chain....Frog Tree in black......

The stitchmarkers pictured (way down at the bottom - Typepad is a whole lot faster, thankfully, but I can't seem to match the pictures and the text or put either where I want them to go...grr)  (yeah, until I whine about it) were a birthday present to myself (stitchmarkers! Impossible to have enough of them)  but half were a very sweet birthday present from Opal - from her new shop Opalescence - with a handful of Hershey Kisses with macadamia nut centers - yum.

There's been knitting (obsessive knitting, not that you can tell from how much I've actually managed to knit of it) but I'm afraid to mention take a picture of  it and jinx it.

No finishing. TDOT and the V Cable Cardi are both in the state of Almost Being Finished, which is almost a as good as being Next In Line.

There's been precious little reading either. I can't seem to get into a book AT ALL. Not that it's stopping me from buying them on (it's my birthday! sometime this month, after all) and putting holds at the library. Somehow I don't think it'll last long.

In the meantime, there's TV. Mad Men. Eureka. Project Runway. Burn Notice. Stargate Atlantis. L&O CI ends this Sunday and last week was Chris Noth's last ep.::sob::

TV hampered by managing to drop my VCR  into a kajillion pieces (okay, five, but believe me, five was enough to kill it) 

Thee Days to Go......

Andreas Tille Castle This is all I've ever asked for on my birthday.

Well, occasionally this has made the list too.

Brendel's RR

But never in my wildest dreams did I hope to get this pattern to make my very own. I saw it at Cabled Sheep, expressed my - well everyones I'm sure, love for it. Cheryl graciously offerered to knit it for my birthday but reneged somewhat ungenerously after finding out that it was this Thursday, but whatever, I'm an easygoing person, I'm used to my dreams being dashed.

But then! THEN! I come home today and IN THE MAILBOX, is this! Not just the Deer Sweater but a whole swarm of patterns! How lucky can one girl get?  Blogsummer08 026_edited

Is that not the most wonderful present EVER? And Cheryl of Cabled Sheep make it all possible. 

Actually, I'd love to get my hands on a pair of those Granny Boots again.

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Did anyone catch Mad Men last night? That Don Draper is dreamy, the cheating cad. I've got to watch the first season. I thought I had but I am so lost I must have only caught an episode or two. 

Michael Shanks of Stargate SG1 starts his four episode arc on Thursday on Burn Notice. At least that's something TV did right for Thursday. I wanted Mega Disasters (History Channel) all day and they gave me pirates. Harumph.

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Hez sez, "Oh, for the love of fashion....."

Thoughtless Thursday

Knittin' Brit in WI has a knitting question - run by her blog and see if you can help her out with her stockinette stitch swatch issue. Scroll down a bit and see her pictures of her and Meg Swanson hanging out.

Project Runway last night, while Korto's outfit was cute, really Joe designed the one I would have chosen. But that statement of his about "..too many queens." Dude, you're the one making the fuss marking your territory.

Jerrell's was just - unbelievable. My Heart Will Go On indeed. I thought Jennifer's outfit was cute, even if it had nothing to do with the Olympics, or Salvador Dali. Holli Golightly I can see but Dali? Not so much. Poor Daniel. I wonder if he's going to actually have a breakdown? One word. Xanax.

Tonight I have the choice of going to see the author of The Lost Queen in the City, opening night of Uncle Vanya at Cal Shakes OrindaVanya_banner , or watch Burn Notice IMDB Burn Notice on USA and knit like a fiend. Guess which one I'll probably pick?

Anyone participating in Ravelympics 2008? I'd like to, but it does seem like it would be the kiss of death for any project already suffering abandonment. Speaking of abandonment, I'm still chugging away on the second sleeve of Lace Edged Elegance aka Golden Gate, aka That D*mm Orange Thing. I have hope for it though.

News! Dizzy Blonde Studios is opening 8/8/8, aka La of JenLa.  

DizzyBlondeStudios's Shop Announcement
Welcome to Dizzy Blonde Studios! Hi, I'm La, so glad you could stop by. I'm a knitter and fiber enthusiast who has now ventured into the creative application of color to string as a new artistic outlet. Whether you'd describe my colorways as "subtly variegated" or "tonally shifting solids" they are fresh and unique.

Dizzy Blonde Yarns All my yarn is hand-dyed in small batches, so even though colorways will be repeated, every dyelot will vary slightly.

My sock yarn is a light-fingering 2-ply 100% superwash merino. Each unique colorway has been named after the gorgeous blonde who was my inspiration. In addition, I will be offering some limited-edition colorways as well as the occasional one-offs as I perfect my technique.

Each skein is approximately 560 yds/115 grams/4oz.of luscious 2-ply 100% Merino superwash, more than enough to make a pair of soft, cushy socks.

Gauge: 8-10 spi on #0-1

My brother, the courtier, at the Great Lakes Medieval Faire last weekend dancing with Lady Ophelia. Lady Ophelia & Bryan_edited Dashing, isn't he?

Meandering Monday


You are a Knife
You are precise, determined, and detail oriented.
You mean what you say, and you say what you mean.

You enjoy taking risks and living on the edge.
You are a controversial person. You opinions tend to be divisive.
What Utensil Are You?

Divisive? Precise? But generally I do say what I mean and mean what I say (unless it's really mean and then I'm more likely to mutter it under my breath. I hate hurting someone's feelings for no good reason.) Found at the incomparable KSD's site. 
From Lyssa's blog:
The Recipe For Carrie K
3 parts Playfulness
2 parts Sass
1 part Moxie

Splash of Allure

Sip slowly on the beach
Speaking of the beach. Blog pix 916_edited That's a  parasailor (?), in case you can't tell. It looks like fun....but it also looks like the wind and the ocean take turns batting you about like a catspaw.
Books read in July:
  1. The Halo Effect by MJ Rose (2005) Awful. AWFUL. So awful that I was compelled about halfway through the book to pick up a pen, argue with the characters across the page and throw the book away when I finished it. The ostensible protagonist of the book is a sex therapist that gets overly attached to one of her clients, an angelic high class call girl who has disappeared. In searching for her, she pretends to be her replacement to "question" the clientele.  If she hadn't lectured the reader incessantly about our closed minds and prudish ideas I might not have gotten so riled when she proceeded to confide when seeing one of the men that they were talking about something obscene. Really? How close minded and prudish. Gah. This might have made a decent porno novel but as a thriller? Yucko.
  2. Bound by Sally Gunning (2008) A story of a girl who is indentured by her father to a widowed man with a daughter after surviving the voyage over from England in the 1770's. The girls grow up and troubles ensue.
  3. The Cobra Event by Robert Preston (1999) I loved this book! A manufactured bio weapon loosed in the City. Good times.
  4. This Rough Magic (1964)
  5. and Thornyhold (1988)by Mary Stewart. I hadn't read Mary Stewart since my teens, possibly. This Rough Magic was more my liking than Thornyhold but both the books were fun reads.
  6. Black Magic Woman by Justin Gustainis (2007) Best book of the month. When's the new one coming out? WHEN? January 2009. Not until then? Sheesh. Blog pix 917_edited Quincy Morris is my favorite go-to guy for the supernatural, after Harry Dresden, of course
  7. Sovereign Ladies: Sex, Sacrifice & Power; The Six Reigning Queens of England by Maureen L Waller (2006). I knew about Mary and Elizabeth Tudor, not as much as I thought about Queen Victoria and more than I realized about Elizabeth II but I knew nothing about Mary and Anne, James II's daughters. Ungrateful Daughters also by Maureen Waller is in my TBR stack now.
  8. The First Queen of England: The Myth of Bloody Mary by Linda Porter (2007). A nicely written well rounded account of Mary Tudor 's reign although I hadn't realized anyone still believed that myth.. Evidently because Linda Porter rails against it a great deal.
  9.  Sins of the Assassin by Robert Ferrigno (2008). The apocalypse has happened (slightly in the future) and what's left of the United States is run by an Islamic President in one part of the country and an old world Colonel in another. There are those that would bring The One Faith to all the world - the Old One, the man behind the 9/11 attacks, unbelievably old now but kept young through science. A really fascinating apocalyptic adventure with an eye  look at religious schism with both sides represented by their best and worst in an action oriented adventure. The dust jacket said that the book was a sequel that could stand alone, but I'm sorry I didn't read Prayers of the Assassin first and get the backstory on Sarah Dougan and Rakkim Epps.  Bookmark Magazine says: Critics expressed different ideas about the plot, using words such as "preposterous," "credible," and even "ordinary" to describe it. There's no doubt, however, that Ferrigno raises important questions about religious freedom while handling the subject of Islamic faith with great insight and evenhandedness. If the plot sometimes overwhelms character development, he still allows his creations to air their own opinions without moralizing. In sum: a fast-paced thriller with timely appeal. Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc. Oh phooey on the critics. I liked it.
  10.  The Accidental Time Machine by Joe Haldeman (2007) This was fun! Matt Fuller "discovers" a time machine - accidentally of course and has to keep traveling into the future to find his way back home. Where home turns out to be is another story.
Knitting in July:

Blog pix 928_edited I'm almost done with TDOT. Both borders for the sleeve knit, one sleeve almost ready to attach the border to it - with the borders attached and knitting it from the top down, once I do the other sleeve, it's done. All weaving was done earlier (in an effort to not think about the sleeves.)

Socks. I have three pairs of unfinished socks on the needles. Wait. I have one to the foot, one to the cuff, and one that's not quite on the needles. In fact, it's not quite to the cake but it's next. Maybe.
We will not speak of the rest of the poor neglected WIPs. Alice Starmore uses way too much green. I wonder how odd Mary would look if I just abandoned all the ugly greens now? I'm only about a third of the way done with the body. You could probably barely tell. If you were BLIND. [sigh]

The beach! what I did Saturday instead of knitting or reading. I've got to say, when one feels grumpy there's nothing better than getting blown around on the beach and then scarfing down a fab dish of oysters for dinner. (Oysters from Washington, I'm sad to say. We were in Bodega Bay. But they sure were good oysters). Blog pix 903 There should have been more pictures but I stuck everything in the trunk and just wandered the beach. Too bad too because it looks like sand castles are out and driftwood forts are in.
Hez sez "Hey! That's not me! I never get to go anywhere fun." (Not that she'd like the car ride or the beach very much. It's the principle.)