Monday, April 30, 2007

Princess Trixie & some stash enhancement

Trixie arrived safely on Saturday and has been making like a princess ever since! (click on her name for her official Petfinder listing)


Trixie_42807a

She's a petite little thing... Pomeranian mix, about 5 years old... possibly mixed with Pekingese or maybe chow (she has the blue/black tongue). I keep wanting to call her Foxie instead though - she looks a lot like a cute little red fox pup!

Trixie_closeupB

She is an absolutely doll and sweetheart, though she prefers humans over stupid furry creatures dogs for sure. She shows NO interest in playing with our dogs or the gazillion toys... and has growled and snapped at them a few times when she doesn't want them interrupting her time with us. Of course, they all basically have heads bigger than her whole body and look at her as if to say "Are you friggin kidding me???," knowing all to well that one snap from Zeus she'd be history - luckily our big guy is a bit of a pushover!).

Zeus_Trixie_42807


Tut can't figure out why the heck this fuzzy thing won't play with him, even when he annoys the heck out of the rest of the house baits her with his version of howl/singing...

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Trix would rather do her "catdog" impersonation and sit on the back or arm of a couch, acting like the little Princess she is.



And sleep with the other princess, Lola...

LolaTrixie_sleeping

We're guessing she was probably someone's spoiled little girl who got groomed lots. Get this - you say "bath" and she gives you the same happy look & wiggles as most dogs give to "cookie" or "treat." Could it really be? A dog who likes baths??!! Anyway, I think she'll thrive as an only-doggy and will make a perfect companion to an older couple or person who just wants to be loved and adored by the little furball .... compact in size, she'll go anywhere...

In knitting news, I was reading about Heather's (who currently got her hands full with her fist ever foster, Frankie, an adorable Australian Shep girl) stach enhancement and thought I'd share some of mine as well. I certainly don't need to enhance it, but I was on a little mini shopping whim last week and acquired the following...

Lorna's Laces Worsted in a deep plum for another pair of cable footsies, Lorna's Laces in Vera for socks (I had a duh moment and only ordered 1 skein, so I placed another quick order for 1 more), some Noro Kochoran in blues & pinks that was on SALE (oh what should I do with this yummy stuff???) and this adorable felted Gerber Daisy (my favorite flower!) kit, also on SALE...

LornasNoroGerber

I got this wonderful, local wool in a heathery purple shade from Dorsey's Wool. This comes from a fellow dog rescue volunteer who raises sheep in Walpole, MA and it is sooooooo soft and wonderful that I ordered 4 more skeins so I have enough for a winter sweaeter!

JoanneWool

Some silky wool for the Somewhat Cowl (pattern also purchased last week)...

SilkyWool

I had pre-ordered the new Special Little Knits from Just One Skein book during the yarn dyeing class at Yarn & Fiber and just received it, hand signed to me from Cheryl. I also bought a skein of the CTH glitter alpaca for a scarf in the book.

justoneskein

On Friday I received this most gorgeous piece of handcrafted jewelry, my absolutely stunning Brandon Bracelet from Lisa. Thank you Lisa, the fit and colors could not possibly be more perfect - I love it! Lisa is the designer & owner of Bella Perlina and decided to graciously give all the girls who helped in Brandon's search one of the bracelets as a thank you. They are amazing - if you need something special for Mother's Day, definitely click on over to her site! The picture does not do the bracelet justice, but I'll try.

BrandonBracelet

Wow... I feel like I sure have blogged a lot in the last week! Hope you're keeping up...

Friday, April 27, 2007

FO's, Photos and ... wet doggies??!!

TGIF! It's another one of those icky, rainy days here in New Hampshire and luckily for you locals, I remembered to down load the photos from last weekend. I give you... beautiful, vibrant crocuses from in front of the house (keeping in mind my DO. NOT. WEED. philosophy).

crocus

Aren't they lovely? Too bad they only look like this for a day don't last or look so vibrant for long. And, its too bad they aren't self weeding. Now that would be some flowers well worth the money, no?

I took that pic last Saturday while Matt was at the track for the first practice day of the season. Know what I else I did while he was playing with go-karts? This...

TutZeusLola_Bath42107b

That folks is 3 clean, fluffy and pretty smelling doggies! It's a real pain in the arse a bit of a challenge to get all 3 in and out of the tub by myself, especially since the 2 boys have perfected their dead-weight dog stances. On the other hand, Lola will hop right on in if you tell her to (getting in yourself helps if extra persuasion is needed) ... good doggy... I raised my little girl well!). Of course, after the bath, she gets out, promptly shakes to ensure Mommy gets an unwanted bath too and then tears around the house rubbing up against everything, leaving a trail of wet paw prints all over the rugs, which you can see below.

LolaBath_42107b

Teutul on the other hand, acts like he's going to die in the tub. He ends up spending half the time in a more rigid stance than a Buckingham Palace guard and the other half flailing around like a fish out of water. Then he gets out and does that shake thing and takes off as I'm trying to chase him down with a towel. After successfully getting everything in the living room wet that big sister didn't, I get this look.

TutBath_42107d

Now Zeus... he used to hop on in the tub like the girl does. Yea, not so much anymore. Do you know what trying to lift a 125 pound dog in his dead-weight position is like? Yea, not so much fun. I have to resort to tricking him in by getting a half lifting, half pushing thing kind of going when he's least expecting it. Once he's in, he's fine... and of course upon getting out, does that shake thing, then rolls around on the couches and dog beds to make sure everything is wet. Then he looks all pleased with himself, like this.

ZeusBath_42107e

So after they dried off some, I did some brushing and started saving fur for what I hope to have spun in to yarn somewhere down the line. It'll be a little while before I have enough saved up, as I'm trying to do all 3 dogs separately (my plan is to knit up keepsake pillows from each one's fur). Lola and Tut's bags are both nearly empty at this point, but Zeus gets really fluffy after a bath and when you brush him, plenty comes off! I have quite a nice stash of his fur going already. If anyone out there has had their pet's fur spun, let me know where/how/what... would love to hear other stories and get advice!

So besides non-stinky dogs this week, I also have 2 FO's for FO Friday! First up is what was supposed to be a capelet for moi, made in Poems Wisdom wool. The pattern I found in the 365 page-a-day calendar called for Noro, but I thought I'd substitute this great yarn I bought at A Knitter's Garden. I also made changes in the needle size and number of stitches, but evidentally didn't use as many stitches as I should have because it came out too narrow. It "fits" but looks ridiculous and doesn't hang right. Here it is, although I haven't woven in the ends yet.

capelet

Any suggestions? I'm thinking perhaps it might make an ok size poncho for a child. I also thought of maybe sewing up the wider end and trying to make some sort of bag out of it. I do have another skein of yarn left. Thoughts & suggestions muchly appreciated...


My other FO for today is my Misti Chunky Ribs & Ruffles scarf, which I finished last night while watching Ugly Betty. I heart this scarf... and the yarn, oh my... it is so soft and luxurious that I want to make myself a big 'ole blanket out of this stuff! I used the rose/gray moulinette colorway which is beautiful. I also have a skein of the charcoal/denim moulinette in my stash and am thinking about a second scarf unless I can think of something better.

chunkyscarfchunkyscarf2



I was looking thru the Misti International site to get those links and happened upon this jacket , which looks like a possibility somewhere down the road.

In other news, we're picking up a new foster tomorrow! Trixie is a pomerian/pekignese mix who looks like a total sweetheart. Heather is getting her first ever foster, Bingy and my wonderful friend Tanya is going to foster 2 of the most adorable puppies I have every seen in my life, sisters Ivy and Ivory. Are they not the cutest little things? I wish we could foster puppies, but they are a bit more time consuming than the older dogs. Tanya is not working at the moment per say, but is in the process of opening her own grooming business in Lowell, MA and therefore has a little more time to be around during the day with them right now. Speaking of which, anyone in the area with dogs & cats, speak up... I'll get you on the mailing list for Grand Opening specials (yes, I've been recruited in her marketing department)!

In prepartion for Trixie's arrival, I went to Pet Smart yesterday and stocked up on some treats, got her some smaller things and a couple toys. I happened upon this cute sheep thing that is part tennis ball, part stuffed toy and couldn't resist. Here he is sticking out of Tetul's mouth...

TutSheep2

Tut tore around the house with him for a couple hours, with the other dogs not getting much time to check him out. By the time Tut got bored, Lola was too pooped to get it and kept giving me the "hey, can you push that over near my mouth so I don't have to get up and get it?" look...

LolaSheep

Yes, we have lazy dogs....

The only other news I have is that Joanne announced her next sale at A Knitter's Garden will be Saturday, May 19th ~ so make sure you mark your calendars! And, I received my confirmation postcard from the Granite State Knit-In registration today and I got both of my first choices for classes! I'm going to be taking the 2 hour "Finishing With a Difference" and the 1 hour "Knitted Beaded Earrings" classes. Can't wait!




Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Ahhhh-Choooooooooo!

Yes folks, spring has arrived and so has my AH-CHOO season (aka seasonal allergies, though I don't think I have a season that I don't have something going on anymore)! I took some photos of the little purple crocus that have sprouted up and bloomed in front of the house, but sadly keep forgetting to download them from the camera. They're hearty little fellows, considering I planted just a few 6 years ago and haven't done a thing since. That means no weeding or clearing out of the yucky leaves from what I had good intentions of being flower beds in front of the house... good intentions indeed, however I discovered that I just DO. NOT. WEED.

On the same note, I do not have any knitting photos for you today (still on the camera). I am working on a great new project (intended to be a gift for someone who reads the blog so photos won't come for a couple weeks on that) that I'm having a blast knitting, as well as still working (slowly) on the shaped alpaca scarf and some other UFO's.

Joanne and I signed up for the Granite State Knit-In XVI (sadly, no website to give you info) at Loon Mountain. I can't wait - sounds like a great day of fun, knitting & friends. Brandon's Mommy Lisa also signed up, which means we'll get to spend lots of time gabbing about knitting and doggies too! Lisa needs a blog by the way... are your reading this Lisa?!?! Lisa? Dog rescue volunteer, jewelry designer and a knitter just getting her addiction back (she confessed to knitting in bed by flashlight the other night! I would say she's an addict!) ... yes ma'am, you must enter blogland! I also just found out that Cyndi from Y&F signed up as a vendor.

Speaking of doggies, I will leave you today with a couple of photos I just received of the one and only
Dustee! His new Mom has been sending me occasional updates and photos, for which I am incredibly thankful for... they always bring a big smile to my face when I open my email and see something from them!


Little Man (now "big man" in his new home) on the run
with sister Kaia's favorite ball


I think Kaia got the ball back ... I love this pic... Happy & Content

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Footsies, Flowers & FO's --- oh my!

Greetings from a very wet and chilly New England! Our Nor'Easter started out with rain, then turned to snow for a bit and back to rain.... and more rain... and more rain is forecast for pretty much the rest of the week. Hello, Miss Mother Nature... did you miss my last post??? I'll spare you the photos of my wet basement and instead share the view out my window.



So, despite the friggin' stinking, dreadful rain cold and wetness, at least we have power today. I had taken yesterday off with intentions of getting some spring cleaning and other things around the house done... Yea, not so much! I found it a bit difficult to vacuum with no power. Fortunately, we were only out for 8 friggin hours most of the day though...
Heather and Joanne didn't get theirs back until this afternoon.

I did manage to get some knitting done yesterday and actually do have 2 FO's to show you! First up, my Cabled Footsies from One Skein in Lorna's Laces Shepherd Worsted in the beautiful Tuscany colorway. (feel free to ignore the snazzy pj pants!)

footsies2


After I finished them, I got extra ambitious. I cast on and finished a matching mini sock for my sock blocker key chain (all while the man was still sleeping, mind you!). What do you think?


footsies

minisock


This was the first (of many to come!) mini socks for me and I have to say, working on size 0 DPN's with worsted weight yarn... not so much fun! Kinda like trying to vacuum with no power. Matt seemed to like the mini sock and even encouraged me to do some for Christmas ornaments ... hhmm, maybe instead of the usual bows & gift tags this year, we'll have sock tags!


So what socks to cast on next? I've already wound up my Sereknity Three Scoops, but now I have 3 skeins of my very own hand dyed yarn to play with too! Decisions, decisions... and back to that hand dyed yarn.... I had a lovely time at the Cherry Tree Hill yarn dying workshop at Yarn & Fiber on Saturday with some fellow ManchVegas knitters, including Heather, Gina, Ericka and Sarah from Pittsfield (whom it was great to finally meet!).


Here's Cheryll from CTH, along with her very helpful daughter!

CTHclass_41407c


The class might've been a little big for such an event (a bit over 20), but Cyndi kept the shop together and Cheryl kept things moving along (she started by saying she usually doesn't do classes that are only 3 hours long, which I could see as a longer class may've left those of us who were completely new to dying with a little bit better of an understanding). I do feel like I picked up the basics and had a lot of fun, but as Ericka mentioned over on her blog, I don't think I'm ready just yet to clean and make room to dye in take over the whole kitchen just yet (paging Miss Heather... how about a group dying day?? lol). We got to dye in groups of 7 and here are a few pictures of the action and the patient waiting.

CTHclass_41407a

CTHclass_41407d

I got to dye 3 skeins - 1 fingering weight and 2 sport weight. Here's how my messes turned out...

MyDyedYarn41407


The bottom hank (blues, pinks, purples) was my first ever attempt at dying yarn. Cheryll asked us all to name our colorway before we even set foot near the dye table... this is "Jazzy Jewels." The middle hank was my second creation that I'm now calling "Autumn Road" and the top hank was my "mistake" hank (I got 2 wound together and didn't realize it until yellow dye had already been placed on both of them... yikes!), dyed at the very end of the class when the dye was scarce and almost all containers completely empty. I'm calling this one "Madi Gras." So what do you think at my first ever attempts at hand dying?


An interesting tidbit... Cheryl taught us to never throw away the left over water, run off or what one might consider "grime" from dying. What one (or at least I) would think to throw down the drain, she calls "exhaust" and uses to dye her Potluck (one-of-a-kind) skeins, of which she brought along lots for us to browse. Here they are, along with several samples of her work.



CTHclassDisplay_41407


I was as reserved as a well trained dog at the White House good and scooped up just one skein. I wasn't even going to get the 1, but it was the one skein I was eyeing while chatting with Gina before class began and it was still there at the end of the day, so...


As you can see, I also picked up 3 skeins of Meditation for what will probably be a scarf and size 4 needles to start my headband (still haven't decided if I will do the Amanda or the Jacqueline but I did wind up my Sereknity "Lilacs In Bloom" yarn last night, so I had better choose one soon). Those purchases don't really count though... you see, the bag really wasn't big enough for Matt to show concern or notice more yarn coming in the house!

Speaking of my honey, look at the burst of color he brought home to me on Friday... I think he was trying to cheer me up from having dropped Dustee (who I got to visit for a bit on Sunday... which made me smile lots!) off to his new forever home the night before. So now I'll share it with my fellow NH knitas, as I'm quite sure you need a burst of color today!


flowers

Are you smiling a little bit and trying not to look out the window now? If not, let's try this one... it seems as though whenever I'm trying to photograph for the blog lately, a nose, tail or paw seem to pop up in the pictures... this time I got a little more.

TutFootsies


Stay dry... stay warm... and keep this thought in mind... if April Showers Bring May Flowers, just what the heck do April Snow Storms and Nor'Easters bring??

Friday, April 13, 2007

Friday the 13th

Finally, the end to a busy and eventful (both good and bad) week... and wouldn't you know it, but we're expecting more friggin' snow on Sunday in the form of a stinking Nor'Easter. ARGH! Urgent message to Miss Mother Nature... what the hell?!?! At this point I'm just hoping we make it out of town without any snow delays at the airport next month!

This is going to be mostly a photo post ... as I have several and I think
Gina was trying to give me a gentle reminder that I haven't posted this week via her "Posts? New post soon?" comment left on my blog earlier today (coming from a lady who I know must be very busy playing with her lovely new spinning wheel!). Why yes Gina, I do have posts... just this crazy little thing called not enough hours in a day has come in to play this week. :)

Now, some photos for your viewing pleasure! First up is my haul from the
Yarn & Fiber April Fool's sale a couple weeks ago. By the way, did anyone out there pull the fool ticket??? I only pulled a 10%, but hey, that still adds up... esp when you have an enabler helping your around the store and although you went in for only 3 skeins of Noro for the Booga bag, you left with this:


Noro for the Booga bag (2 different ones) and 2 skeins of Lamb's Pride Bulky for a felted clutch and bowl from One Skein ...

YarnHaul1

Debbie Bliss Pure Cotton for the baby bolero (also from One Skein) and some Rowan Tweed & Crystal Palace Fizz to make this felted puppy dog...

YarnHaul2

Now sales are great, right? Joanne at A Knitter's Garden is having a great April special of BTGO ... not quite BOGO, but instead its buy 2 needles, get 1 free (and you can mix and match DPNs, circs and straights). Since I needed some Addis for the felted clutch & bowl, I went through and figured out some other sizes I need and ta-da....

Needles

You can't beat that deal, esp with the Addis! Thanks Joanne!!! :) I picked them up on Wednesday night at knitting guild, for which I finally made it after a 2 week absence and worked on my alpaca shaped scarf.

scarf

Still not a whole lot of knitting progress made this week with 101 different things going on. I'm hoping to get back to a little more "normal" (what's that?) of a week now... although its spring cleaning time and boy do I have enough to hire someone else to do for me if I were rich plenty of that to do.

I'm both happy and sad to report that Dustee (be sure to click that for a cute pic!) went to his forever home last night. We were both a little heartbroken when we had to leave him and we do miss him, but we know he is in the perfect home, with the perfect new Mommy & Daddy! He has a doggy sister Kaia, as well as a kitty sibling too. I've been around dogs my entire life and never before have I been so taken, so quickly by such an amazing little creature. He truly is the happiest, most loving, outgoing, amazing little dog you will ever meet. Dustee touched many hearts in the 2 1/2 weeks he was in our household and I know he'll touch many more. We plan to keep in touch and hope to get lots of pictures & updates and visit once in awhile, as well as have some doggy play dates so his step-brothers and sister can see he's doing well. I received an update this morning from Nicole (yes, his new Mom's name is Nicole... think it was meant to be?) which made the heart ache a little less, esp since we were so worried of how attached he'd become to us. Here are some cute photos...

Big smiles...

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A Curious Cutie...

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Proud Foster Mommy (maybe now its Auntie Nichole?)...

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When we arrived home after dropping Dustee off last night, our dogs were a little confused and Lola was a bit heartbroken. She went outside looking for the little guy and cried ... then came back inside and cried at the empty leash some more. Zeus just seemed confused and curious, sniffing around and looking a little sad. On the other hand, Teutul seemed quite pleased with himself that he was once again the baby of the house and could command all of Mommy & Daddy's attention... little stinker! All 3 were quite pleased at this most amazing and delicious looking box of goodies that was so graciously sent home for them (thank you again Nicole & Josh!)...

ThankYouBox

Here are the curious on lookers, who were threatened just a little reminded not to touch while posing for photos... they're good like that sometimes!

TutLolaBox412 ZeusBox412

Sometimes I just don't think I'm cut out for this whole fostering thing, but then again I remember that I'm helping to save some amazing doggies lives and also making some really happy families! Dustee was and will always be extra special to us and will hold a special place in our hearts. I don't think any other foster will be as amazing as he is (or at least I hope not ... its a little easier to think of them going to new homes when they're less captivating and amazing!) and we will do some more fostering in the future!

I managed to get another shot of all 4 dogs and will leave you with this...

TutZeusLolaDustee_409

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Friggin' Spring...

Snow! Yes folks, that's right... friggin' spring snow. Here's what we woke up to this morning (after loosing power for 5 or 6 hours over night... it came back on around 5:30 this morning). This is the view out back (for which we still need to start the spring clean up of the broken and downed branches from the last hell ice storm...


AprilSnow_40507

View down the driveway after Matt got up at the crack of dawn to snowblow...

AprilSnow_40507c

I didn't manage to snap a picture, but there were about a dozen birds hanging out in the driveway. I think it was because their bird feeders looked like this...

birdfeeders_snow

Yes folks, this is friggin' spring in New England! Matt didn't get around to cleaning the dog's area before leaving for work this morning and I think they actually enjoyed it. Lola was the spaz woman, zipping around full speed...

Lola_zipsnow

And here's the smile while zipping shot...
Lola_zipsnow2

Houseguest Dustee was not a fan of the cold, wet snow last night, but I think he was warming up to the idea this morning ... somewhat anyway.
DusteeSnow3

Zeus just said "What the heck is this mess?? Where's my darn sun spot to lounge in??" (doesn't he look sad? Don't let the face fool you though... he was zipping around in the white stuff too!)

Zeus_snow

Meanwhile, king Tut said screw it all "Let me know when the sun's out" and opted for the couch...

Tut_40507

Although I didn't make it out last night to knitting, I did manage to cast on Cabled Footsie #2 and get some rows worked!

footsie2

I also wanted to post a pic of my "shaped scarf" in progress. I'm using 100% native alpaca purchased at A Knitter's Garden and a pattern that Joanne had knitted up for a nice wrap style scarf.

alpacascarf

I still have quite a ways to go on it, but am loving how this alpaca is knitting up! Its great on your hands and I love the natural, beautiful grey color!

The only other interesting aspect since yesterday.... if you recall I mentioned how Dustee is unearthing all of our dogs' old toys that they haven't touched in years? I've got the proof!

DusteeToysa

See the blue crate in the background? That's where Dustee hangs out in while we're at work (its in the living room right next to the tv so he can see & hear what's going on - Lola & Zeus have free reign of the house, Tut is in his extra, extra large crate in the bedroom)... notice the abundance of toys gathered in front of and around the crate??? Its almost like Little Man is watching over his shoulder to see who's sneaking up on the toy pile too... And just in case you're shaking your head, yes that is a headless duck to Dustee's right and an alligator's foot under Dustee's front paw... Queen Lola says "Don't ask, dont' tell..."