Wednesday, December 28, 2011

He's a Sweet Kitty

I found a couple of pictures of BoingBoing in my phone the other day. They were taken in the last few months, I couldn't really say when. But I like them, so here they are.

He can be an imp, but he's the sweetest thing since honey. He purrs and squeaks, but doesn't meow, howl or any other usual cat sounds. His best friend is Henry -- they wrestle and chase and ambush each other, it's pretty funny. I only break things up when the dog drags Kitten by the tail.

Yes, he has an odd name. Nothing really seemed to fit, and we didn't want to keep "Lucy" after we confirmed the boy bits. He was spring-loaded when he was small, which is how we got his name. These days, ballast issues may prompt me to change it -- to Thud.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Time Out for Sheep Cuteness

And, for the curious, this is how they got those sweet lambs to sing ...

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Reclaiming my Needles

Its given name is the Jo Sharp wide collar vest, a project that, according to my Ravelry page, I started in ... 2007! Yes, Henry, that was before you were even born. It soon became known as the project with interminable ribbing.

Also known as too tedious for words and the only justification for a knitting machine. And as of last week ...

It's also known as finished! Kvetching aside, I like this vest a lot. It's warm but not bulky and fits nicely whether belted or not. I hope others like it, too, because they will be seeing it alot.

I have indeed reclaimed my size 6 Addis, which I thought were 5s, which I need to start the body portion of this. I thought briefly of taping together all the 16-inch 5s that aren't busy and make do, but sanity quickly returned and I opted instead to fetch some 7s and make the first sleeve:

Berroco refers to it as Blackstone Tweed, shade 2635, but I call it medium teal -- it reminds me of Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran. I've heard one complaint that it breaks, but I have had no issue with it. I am falling in love.

I haven't decided what to do with the two leftover balls of the Felted Tweed, but I should be able to find something here, don't you think?

P.S. If you're Christmas shopping for your favorite knitter, be sure to read the Yarn Harlot's last few posts. She knows what she's talking about. Just sayin' ...

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Something is Not Right

I saw this item from the Los Angeles Times. Am I the only one who is disturbed?

Infants and toddlers are spending twice as much time with screen media as they are with books, according to a national study by Common Sense Media.
Forty percent of 2- to 4-year-olds and 52 percent of 5- to 8-year-olds are using smartphones, video iPods, iPads or similar devices, the study found.
Among the study’s other key findings:
• Forty-two percent of children younger than 8 have a television in their bedroom.
• In a typical day, 11 percent of kids up to age 8 use a smartphone, video iPod, iPad or similar device to play games, watch videos or use apps. Those who do such activities spend an average of 43 minutes a day doing so.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Compare and Contrast

This weekend has been nothing short of miraculously mild for this time of year -- riding outside in shirtsleeves in November? Yes, really. Everyone is talking about it. What I keep thinking about is a year ago this very weekend, when not only was Dr. Denney bird hunting in South Dakota, as he is now, but it was considerably less lovely.

Speaking of less lovely ...

This is what it looks like the third time a Christmas ornament gets frogged. Why? Because the knitter hadn't read fair isle charts with increases/decreases for ... longer than she realized, clearly! After making probably all of the mistakes that can be made on a small globe-like object, it finally got sorted out. Among the five or six of us who chipped in to help get the shop ready for the holidays, this was the result (The hapless tangle is now the rocking horse, just left of center):

Then there's this little odd bit,

which grew up to be this sweater, a shop sample.

Cordial, a cropped little number from Rowan's 50th anniversary magazine. It isn't my favorite color, but it isn't my sweater, either. It's a large, which fits more people than the teensy sweaters that Rowan sends around! It's a Big Wool special, so it knit up quickly, all that seed stitch notwithstanding. I gotta say, though, that several skeins of the Big Wool had a knot in them, one had four! Let's hope it was a fluke bad batch and not an indication of larger problems. I want to keep loving this yarn.

Today's parting shot is, you guessed it, more yarn. Rowan Colourscape, in bracken, found fabulously on sale here on Saturday. Its spotty reputation precedes it, but four skeins came home anyway, which means a return visit for three more. My first impulse is to make this, but I'm open to suggestions!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Monday, November 7, 2011

Welcome, wee John!

For the new buckeroo, cowboy booties:

Congratulations Holly and Todd! We're thrilled for you!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Wyoming is Still Wonderful

In case there were any doubts, that is. I can't believe it's been four weeks since we were there (again!), but so it goes. With a third visit under our belts, I noticed a few things: I'm learning my way around the Salt Lake airport, as well as the freeways in and out. The exit at Park City for lunch and groceries? The empty exit that takes us north? Four hours later, the turn off the county road that takes us to the ranch house? Check, check and ... check (grateful for daylight on the last one!).

We spent the first full day riding on the ranch, which was plenty swell. There was alot of sky, alot of grass ...

... and alot of sage.

See that white sliver at the middle-right? That's Kara's house. Yes, We're still on her property:

We had a tagalong that day, a cutie-pie pony, who was energetic enough that he surely put on a couple more miles than we did. He ran way ahead at first, and then thought better of it. I think he was secretly relieved to be haltered and then ponied along for the rest of the trip.:

The heck with Waldo. Where's the moose? Right there in in the scrub -- that smudge of brown and the glint (the paddle of an antler) -- a cow and yearling were to the left of the frame. I'd not seen a moose before, so this was cool.

We worked our way to the top of Merna Butte -- funny how it's always a steeper climb than it looks at the bottom -- I made it handily in no small part to this guy, Big Red.

This is lunch with a view. Looking east and north-ish from the top of the butte. That's the Wind River range pressed against the horizon. Pretty swell, eh?

On Saturday, it was off to Glimpse Lake with a bigger group. A friend of ours who lives on the other side of the Winds drove down and around 'em to spend Saturday and Sunday with us. We hadn't seen him for a few years, so it was a fun surprise. The teeth-jarring drive to the trailhead became worth it early on. This was minutes into the ride. Those are the Winds, much closer this time:

Twisting slightly to the right after taking the photo above, a clear view of Fremont Lake, which we followed for awhile up high, until dropping back down and into the trees.

So, Michelle. I have some major hat envy. To say nothing of your handsome horse. Hi, Wizard.

This would be a parking lot, back-country style.

Nice place for lunch and a beverage, don't you think?

The Fort Robinson bunch. My dirty knee is a nice touch.

Next stop? Trapper Lake, where it was easier for the horses to cool their heels. Or knees. Valentine, there on the left, wasn't so keen on the idea, but Sage/Steve and Wizard/Michelle didn't even break stride till they got where they wanted to be.

Somewhere in the Bridger wilderness, between Trapper Lake and the trailhead, there is a tube of my favorite chapstick. If you find it, uh, leave it be. I might or might not have dozed off on the way back to Pinedale. This was looking out my window of the truck:

On Sunday, off to Hoback Junction, then a right turn, a left turn and a couple of rocky miles before parking the trailer. Not long after we got in the saddle, we came across a couple of hunting parties packing out meat. We tried to invite ourselves for dinner, but we couldn't get anyone to agree. Funny that ...

So, on we went, through the brush -- willows in Wyoming -- rubbernecking, chatting

and following Shoal Creek headed for Shoal Falls.

Yes, this is real. And yes, it's difficult to fit into a camera frame.

We tied the horses deep in the woods in the background and hiked and scrambled and scrambled some more to the spot near the falls where we had lunch and, um, more beverages.

We tackled the world's problems -- glad we got that all sorted out! -- and yes, it was pretty funny. Michelle isn't the only one who can rock a cowboy hat!

A few more pictures, for good measure. It's difficult to see, but the slabs were lined up like slices in a loaf of bread.

We won't talk about our misadventure getting back to the horses. We were not lost. We weren't! Let's say we took a walk before riding back out. It was just as beautiful heading out as it was heading in.

We kept trying to cram it all into a camera frame, of course.

Kara came close with this one. If I had to pick a single favorite image from the trip, this would have to be it:

Thanks, Kara, for another great weekend. Happy Trails.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A New Dog Toy

What could possibly be better than a kong with peanut butter? A woodpile with a chipmunk:

They do this for huge stretches of time.

It has never occurred to either one of them to jump the fence and visit with Titan, the dog next door.

The woodpile is getting a little ragged looking and Henry tends to lose his head.

But, try as they might, Chippie always wins.

Friday, September 9, 2011

AzGym's Turn to Sparkle

Everyone's favorite Grandpa horse had his turn to shine last weekend, when he delivered the groom to his wedding at the Hindu temple in Maple Grove. Yes, he's wearing the headpiece upside down -- it was way too big and he couldn't see, so we spun it around. No one seemed to notice or care. A quick test drive to make sure he wouldn't mind his new clothes and that lurking umbrella:

Check and ... check. Next up? Load the groom. It was a bit easier said than done, but we made it. A last-minute addition of earplugs -- loud music! fireworks! -- and off they went.

For being such a good boy, he got a little extra grain in his bucket when he got home.
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