Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!



I hope you're having a wonderful Halloween! There is so much on TV that I couldn't begin to list it all if you want to spend your Halloween on the couch watching the tube. Right now, The Good Witch is on Hallmark, and it will be followed by The Good Witch's Garden. Both will be repeated later today. Both are good movies if you want a quiet story about ordinary people interacting in good and bad ways. I've enjoyed both of them enough to want to watch them again, so that says something.

For you knitters out there, you might be interested in Cassie's sweater in The Good Witch's Garden, too. It fascinates me every time I see it.

Oh, and I was reading Twitter earlier today, and there was someone who said that All Hallows Day was Halloween. This is incorrect! All Hallows Day is the first of November. Halloween is the evening before All Hallows Day, or All Hallows Eve!

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Holly and Robin have been having fun in New Orleans. They were both disgusted with the hotel they booked. Their website said they were "minutes from" all the best places. It turns out that they are only minutes from these places if you have a car (with attendant parking problems) or want a $20 cab ride each way. They planned to change to another hotel after the first night. Beware of believing everything you read in internet ads.

The first day, they saw a swamp. Holly sent this photo of it.


She said it was very pretty down further, but she didn't send me a photo of that, only this one.

That evening, they went to see Doctor John. I found some great recordings of him on YouTube, which, by the way, has a great logo up there for today.


I have an older computer and lots of videos are almost unwatchable in it, but these play well, and they have enough clarity and volume available that I can hear them with no problem, probably better than they could live because of the lack of background voices. So, turn the sound up, but not too far!





Here's a fabulous version of Goodnight Irene, which is one of my favorites. My grandmother's name was Irene, and I think she would have loved this version of it. She never liked the name Irene, but I've heard stories of her dancing on a table at a roadhouse, and that's what this make me think of.





Here's Let the Good Times Roll, which I know he also played that night. Holly was texting me the names of some of the songs.




And here's one of his boogie pieces:




This morning, Holly sent me another photo of a swamp, and said that they're going on a boat tour of the swamp!


And another photo from Holly:



Actually, I think Doctor John made the whole trip worthwhile, but today is Halloween, and I'll bet they have even more fun tonight. They plan to wear costumes. Holly will wear her pirate costume once again, and I'm not sure I want to say how Robin is going to dress.

Holly promised me pictures, so you'll probably get to see it anyway.

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I'm about halfway down the first sleeve of the slinky sweater. Photos soon.

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I don't get many comments, so I'll answer this one.

Yes, I went to see the dentist. Yes, I got my whole kitchen torn out and replaced. Yes, they happened on the same day. No, the dentist did not do the kitchen renovation.

Oh, and if you're reading this on Halloween, check out the Weather Pixie in the sidebar. She's got a Jack 'O Lantern, and, because it's raining here, an orange umbrella!

I wish you the best Halloween ever!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy Mischief Night!

Tonight is Mischief Night, and I hope your windows remain soap-free, your bushes remain un-TPd, and you remain, in general, free of all other tricks.

I really don't have a lot to write about.

Today, I was up early for the third day this week, this time to get a flu shot, and I am in an absolute daze, unable to string two coherent thoughts together.

Maybe I shouldn't have picked today to pick up all the stitches around the armhole of my slinky ribs sweater and to start a set-in sleeve. But I did. If worst comes to worst, I'll just rip it all out, and I'll only have lost a little time.

So, anyway, my sister sent this to me, and I'm sending this to you. It requires Flash, and the sound is cute, too, so turn it up!


Have a happy Mischief Night, an a wonderful Halloween!

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Addition:

Check out the 16 Halloween costumes that would get you fired if you wore them to work here. Here's a sample:


The expression on the baby's face is priceless!

Boo!

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Addition (too):

V will be premiering on Tuesday evening on ABC, and if you want to get ready for it, The SyFy Channel will be running all the V that ever was up until now on Sunday, according to their announcements on air and my digital TV Guide, although their online schedule says they will not be airing it on Sunday. If you want to watch it, it's worth tuning in to see if it will really be on.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

I'm in a Daze

This is the second week this month that has me getting up early several mornings in one week. Today was one of those days, and tomorrow will be, too.

Earlier this month, I had to get up early on Tuesday to go to the dentist and have my kitchen replaced, and then on Thursday for something else that I can't think of at the moment.

This week, we have another early dental appointment on Tuesday, followed by an appointment to tell me what my new rent will be for the next year, and tomorrow I have to get up early again to get a flu shot.

The dental appointment on Tuesday wasn't fun, but I've just about recovered from that. The awful tastes/smells are almost gone, it feels a little funny, but doesn't really hurt anymore, and the whole center of my face is still not happy about having been filled with Novocaine, but I'm pretty much over it.

Even though my income won't be going up next year (Susan, in her wisdom insists that the newspeople reporting that Social Security will not be going up next year are wrong, and it will), and my rent is dependent on my income, and in spite of the fact that I managed to muster $500 in eligible medical expenses from last year, my rent is still going UP! That $500 in medical expenses is getting me a whole $13 a month discount on my rent. Wow! I'm underwhelmed!

I'm also tired from getting up early two days this week, and I'm going to have to repeat it all tomorrow to get a flu shot.

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There's a lot of good stuff on TV tonight!

Vampire Diaries and Supernatural will be on the CW tonight, and they'll both be new. For any of you who (like me) have missed some of the Vampire Diaries, they've been running reruns at other times. I think there was one on Tuesday, and I know there was another one last night. Supernatural has been dynamite, but I still haven't made up my mind about the Vampire Diaries. I keep hoping it'll grow on me, but so far, it's "Who cares?"

There's a new Mentalist on tonight, too, and a new Flash Forward.

I need to manage to catch up on my sleep. Unfortunately, it's impossible for me to "catch up on my sleep" because if I miss those early morning hours, I'm never able to catch up.

Have fun with all the great TV tonight!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Day at the Dentist's Office

Yesterday, I had to get up at 7 am (that's really early in the morning for me!) to get myself ready in enough time to catch the bus and get to the dentist's office at 10!

I wanted enough time to get a chance to eat something because I didn't think I'd want to eat later, and I was right about that.

The plan was for me to get a broken cap replaced, and get a new cap for a badly damaged tooth. Since the teeth were next to each other, and they weren't sure how well the new cap would do because the tooth was so badly damaged, the plan was to get one cap of two teeth stuck together (no space to floss in between).

Things started off pretty well. They gave me the Novocaine and then did an impression of all my teeth. When I got the cap that's now broken, it took something like ten to twenty minutes to do the impression, but this time they did it in under a minute. I thought this was real progress, but it has it's down side.

The next step was to remove the broken cap, which was almost like trying to remove a real tooth. It took a lot of drilling to weaken the cap, and then a lot of force. There was very real violence involved!

Then we moved on to cutting down the other tooth that had already broken and been repaired and then had a bad cavity added to the mix. That went pretty smoothly.

Then we came to the part that was a real problem for me, which was taking an impression of the base of the two teeth that we planned to make new caps for.

They took the impression. But they weren't happy with it, so they added more of the impression material and did it again. And again. And again. And again.

The problem with this is that they were just adding more material to the original impression, coupled with the fact that the impression material seems to shrink a bit as it cures. I'm sure that it doesn't really shrink a lot, but it was enough, since this was an impression of all my teeth, including the back ones that each time he redid it, it was harder to get it back on. Each time they redid it, he had to use more muscle to get it back on. And once it was on, it felt like it was bending all the bones in my face and head. It hurt! It really hurt!

After the third or fourth time they did it, it pulled the cap off my other front tooth. The dentist tried to replace it, but broke it in the process. So, they had to do an impression of the base of that tooth, too.

So, I'm left with the fading taste/smell of: rubber gloves, the impression material, Novocaine, burned teeth (from the drilling), blood and other assorted dental tastes/smells. I thought some of it might be on my hands or face, but no amount of washing/brushing would get rid of it last night. It's starting to fade today. Plus, there are still small pieces of the impression material that I'm fishing out of my mouth and trying to scrape off the inside of my upper lip, etc, and the skin on the inside of my lip seems to be blistered and is partly peeling off.

My whole head, and especially my face, hurt last night from the distortion that was imposed by the impression material. There was and still is a sharp pain in my nose for no reason I can think of unless there was a hairline crack in the area between my front teeth and nose. The whole area that had Novocaine in it still hurts, as it always does for a few days after something like this. The temporary caps are probably a tiny fraction of an inch larger than the previous caps/tooth, so they're pressing against the teeth in both directions, which hurts a bit. And, of course, they had to drill my tooth below the gumline, so the gum is all torn up, and the whole general area has swollen. None of this is major pain, but it's enough to make me feel yucky. I know from past experience that it will be worth it, though.

So, I have temporary caps on three of my front teeth, and instructions not to bite into anything "unless you want your teeth to be all chippy before we can replace them."

In three weeks, I'll go back and they'll remove the temporary caps, fill a cavity next to one of the caps, give me the finished caps, and I'll have time for it all to heal before Thanksgiving!

I had three caps put in almost thirty years ago, and I do know that all this hassle/pain will be worth it. Once it's done, it'll be almost like having my own, real teeth. I can hardly wait!

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Holly and Robin are on their Halloween vacation already. Unless they met with delays at the airport, they should be in New Orleans by now.

Holly called me last night. She's angry at K-Mart. She ordered a camera from them with expedited shipping. They guaranteed absolutely that she would have the camera delivered yesterday. As of yesterday, they hadn't even shipped it! She swears that she will never buy anything from K-Mart ever again! I don't really blame her. So, now she has to spend part of her vacation looking for a nice camera to buy. You would think that in this economy, a store like K-Mart wouldn't want to blow a sale.

So, for any of you planning your Christmas shopping, keep this in mind.

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Eastwick will be on again tonight! I can't wait! The electronic TV Guide on my DVR says that they plan to burn a witch for Halloween! I sincerely hope they plan to do it in effigy! Whatever, it should be good!

I really hope you got to see the Halloween episode of Castle on Monday! It was too much fun!

Have a great evening!


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Addition:

I nearly forgot!

Trick or Treat!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Halloween for Knitters

Deadly Knitshade has been having Halloween fun over at the London Stitch 'N Bitch! She wrote a great article for them about how to deal with zombies if you happen to be a knitter. I'm severely tempted to put a photo from the post in here to whet your appetite.

Oh, alright, I'll do it.


Please go and read the article! It's great! And there's a lot more in it than just the photo! And if you're on Twitter, you can follow her at deadlyknitshade.

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In more Halloween fun, I went to the grocery store yesterday, but also took a walk to see if I could get a photo of that wading bird that shows up only if I don't have a camera with me.

I actually managed to walk onto the bridge before I noticed that there were some teenage girls dressed as Zombies, complete with make up taking pictures of each other on the bridge. They were using fake blood that they'd bought. I remarked on the fact that they'd bought it and told them how to make fake blood. Making movie blood is something I learned from Tim Davis while we were working on New Genesis. We had a fun chat, and I told them to look up Tim on Facebook because he's been looking for zombies for the movie he's doing.

The wading bird, needless to say, didn't show up. Considering the crowd on the bridge, I didn't really expect it.

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In knitting news, the body of the sweater is done. I even picked up and knitted the pocket linings I've picked up stitches around the neckline and am currently doing a 2x2 rib. I'd rather do some garter stitch, but since the whole bodice of the sweater is in rib, I think that the stretchier rib is the way to go. Once I finish the neckline, there's only the sleeves to knit, darn in ends, sew down the pocket linings and block it! Most of it is done!

I feel guilty knitting something for myself so close to Christmas, though. I want to make some things to sell on Etsy, and make some more Christmas presents. If you scroll to the bottom of this page, you'll find the widget that tells you how many days there are until Christmas. Today, there are exactly 60. That feels like such a long time and such a short time all at once. Only 60 days left to get ready! If you're making presents, get busy!

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Tonight, we have a brand new episode of Heroes, The Big Bang Theory, and Castle.

Castle, in particular, is not-to-be-missed! There will be a dead vampire, references to the Buffy storyline that Nathan Fillion was in, plus, he'll be wearing his Captain Tightpants outfit as a Halloween costume! And, if they're smart, there will be even more in the episode.




Find out more about tonight's Castle episode, as well as Heroes, and highlights of the rest of the week here.

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Well, that was exciting. And now, for something completely different, we have something that I hope is funny.



Have a great evening!

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Addition:

For some additional humor, check this out!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Books

Holly asked me the other day when the next Dresden Files book would be out. Well, after doing some checking, I'm not so sure that she's gotten the latest book that's already out, called Turn Coat. And, as usual, it's a fabulous book.

The next book is Changes, and it'll be available on the 6th of April.

And now for the big news in new books!

There is a whole new book to add to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series! It's called And Another Thing... and it's by Eoin Colfer.

You didn't really think it was going to be written by Douglas Adams, did you?

I already have a copy of Turn Coat (and I've enjoyed immensely, just like I always do with Dresden Files books), but in hope, I've started a Christmas Wish List at Amazon for anyone who might want to buy a Christmas present for me. There are a few pricey items on the list (because I live in hope), but for others who are as broke as I am, there are a few books on the list that are under $5! I have no problem with getting used books as presents, and would love to have anything on the list! One of them is so cheap, in fact, that I'll probably buy it for myself at the beginning of the month!

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There's a new Dollhouse on Fox tonight. After saying that they planned to show the whole series, they're now saying that tonight will be the last one. Fox seems to always be pretty schizophrenic, and I don't really know which thing I should believe, but Fox is so good at messing up good shows that I tend to believe that they've really cancelled it. They've caught on to the fact that if they get 1,000 emails begging them not to cancel Dollhouse, it doesn't mean that it has 5 million viewers. It's more likely to mean that it has 2,000 viewers. So, they don't seem to be listening to viewers anymore. They say it has a small group of very vocal and enthusiastic fans.

But they are listening to ratings. So make sure that you watch it tonight if you want to see the rest of them! I plan to watch it and record it both. I hope that counts!

There's also a new Ghost Whisperer, and they've scheduled Medium to show at the same time as Dollhouse and Ugly Betty, giving me a hard choice.

And then, of course, there's SyFy, which is showing a rerun of last week's Stargate Universe, followed by the new episode, which is a very nice way to watch them. And let's not forget Sanctuary.

All in all, it's a great night for SF on TV!

Got to go! Lots to do! Have a great weekend!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Welcome to the Sauna!

It's gotten over 70 degrees both yesterday and today, and that means that even with all the windows open as far as I can open them, it's about 90 degrees in here since the people who run the apartment building have the heat turned on. I have my thermostat turned down to freezing, but that doesn't slow it down at all. I think I've turned it up past freezing in the winter about twice since I've been here. And that was when we had weather that didn't get above about 13 degrees for a high for an extended time period. Usually, all I have to do to warm the place up in extreme weather is to shut the windows.

So, don't expect a lot of blogging until it cools off a bit.

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Here's an update on what's been happening around here.

Holly and I decided to save on some of Bud K's shipping fees and place a combined order for both of us. Holly and I both have an interest in edged weapons, both as tools and as art objects. Some of the edged weapons I have used to be useful for SCA, but Holly collects them. I, for one, could not resist a sock knife that has a braided cable pattern for a hilt and has a blue stone set in it. It's beautiful. We're each getting one, in fact.

See why, as an artist, I like it?

But here's the really big news!

Holly and Robin are going to New Orleans for Halloween!

Holly called me from work last night to gloat that a week from then, she'd be in New Orleans. I envy her the opportunity! It sounds like so much fun! I've already told her I want pictures!

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I have news about Dollhouse. Lots of news, and it's all conflicting. Apparently, according to Fox, they have decided to show the entire season, all 13 episodes, and they have cancelled it, and Friday's episode will be the last. Which is par for the course for Fox. I have no idea how it's possible for them to do both of these things, but then they managed to kill one of the best TV shows I've ever seen, namely, Firefly.

When they originally decided to pick up Dollhouse, Firefly and Joss Whedon fans immediately started a campaign to get Fox to not cancel Dollhouse. After murdering Firefly, Fox was bewildered that the fans might think that they'd managed to destroy Dollhouse, too. Gee, I can't imagine why.

I don't know if you've been watching Castle or not, but there are some little nuggets for SF fen scattered here and there. There's a recent episode where he says something to the effect of "I'm going to buy a space ship and call it Serenity." But for next Monday's Halloween episode, there will be references to Bufffy the Vampire Slayer (specifically the episodes that Nathan Fillion was in) and to Firefly, specifically, he'll be wearing his "Captain Tightpants" outfit as a Halloween costume. Fans of the captain should not miss it! It looks like it'll be a lot of campy fun! I can't wait!

There's a game of some kind on TV tonight, so I'm finally going to get to see an episode of Grey's Anatomy, for the first time this season because Fringe won't be on.

I don't know why all the networks have put anything worth watching on Thursday and Friday nights. They probably didn't have room for Heroes and Eastwick on Thursday and Friday due to the jam-up of all the good shows then. Those are currently the only good shows, along with Legend of the Seeker that are regularly scheduled shows on TV, other than reruns of Torchwood.

Eastwick, by the way is the only show currently on television that gets me to yell out "No!" at the TV because the episode is over! I'm hooked!

So, tonight, you can enjoy Flash Forward, The Vampire Diaries, Supernatural and The Mentalist. Tomorrow, we have Ghost Whisperer, Medium and (of course) Dollhouse!

Enjoy!

I feel like I'm cooking from the inside out, so I'm going to go and either lie down or maybe take a cold shower. I hate this every Spring and Fall!

And here's something funny for you, just because I can!


Crazy Aunt Purl, this one's for you!

I hope you're not overheating, and that you have a great evening!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Imagine

Yesterday I went to the library.

Before I went, something kept telling me that I needed to take my camera. And I kept thinking "It's about 6:00, it'll be getting dark soon at this time of year, and there won't be anything new and different to take photos of, anyway." I've already taken so many photos of the parkland behind my apartment and posted them on my blog.

So, naturally, there was a lot of stuff that I wanted to take photos of!

I mentioned in the past sometime, I think, that there's some kind of wading bird that's been hanging around the lake/pond here. I don't know exactly what it is, and I haven't been able to get photos of it.

So, there I was, walking along and reading, as I usually do, and I happened to look up, and there, sitting under the small bridge, was the elusive wader. The water is much shallower there than I had thought it was, because it was standing right under the bridge. I stood there a moment and admired it, and then went around away from it to get to the bridge, instead of cutting corners and walking near the bird. I didn't want to disturb it. I walked very quietly across the bridge, looking through the spaces between the boards, hoping to get another glimpse of it. That didn't work. By the time I got right above it, it took off and flew off to the other end of the pond.

I was disappointed, but continued on. By the time I had gotten to the other bridge, it was sitting next to the bridge on the rock ledge that encloses the small pool on the far side, right next to the spillway/waterfall. I was able to walk to the side of the bridge and watch it for a few minutes.

Then, I continued on to the library to pick up my books. On the way back, the bird was where it had been before, but now the sun was setting, and the sky had broad stripes of pink and blue across it, and those colors were reflected in the pond (with ripples from the fountain at the other end), and in the perfectly still waters of the pool, and the bird was silhouetted against all this colorful glory! It was such a perfect photo opportunity, and I didn't bring my camera!

I am so disgusted with myself!

So, you're just going to have to imagine all this.

I plan to take a walk through the area later today and see if it'll be there again, and this time I plan to take my good camera!

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I finally did take some photos of my latest knitting project, the slinky stripes variation from Custom Knits. Here's a photo of what is left of the yarn, in the box it came in.



And this is how far I've gotten since I started it on Saturday.


It's moving right along. I plan to add pockets in the next inch or so. I can't stand clothes without pockets (except underwear). I think I'm going to like this one.

In other knitting news, I wanted to design a hat for Heather instead of the "Hermione's Hat" that she wanted. Well, she really wanted the copy of Hermione's Hat, so I sent her one.

But before she insisted once again that she really wanted that hat, I had designed a few others in my mind, and I've been dying to knit them up, so I think I'm going to do that for some lucky person for Christmas. I've also thought of some great accessories to make to go with the hat(s). Then, I found some really neat yarn in the Herrshner's catalog. It's Bernat Alpaca Yarn in lavender.

It doesn't look as pretty on my screen as it does in real life, but I can't wait for the beginning of the month to have the money to order it! It feels so nice! I can't wait to get my current sweater finished so that I can start on it all. My problem is that I can design faster than I can knit. I have one had completely designed in my head, and another one with several variations, plus another one!

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I need to get going if I'm going to have a chance to go for a walk at twilight! The AC is off in my apartment and the heat is on, and since it's 70 degrees out there, it's over 80 degrees inside and edging up toward 90, so I was saving my shower for the late afternoon, when it would really feel good! So, I have to do that before I go.

Don't forget to watch Eastwick tonight!

Have fun!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

More Rain

It's raining.

It's still raining.

The rain is still going on!

Today is the day that I was supposed to finally get to go to the Maryland Renaissance Festival, and here I sit at home, writing my blog.

I talked to Holly on Friday evening and she said that if it was going to be cold and rainy today that she wasn't going.

When I checked the weather station on TV last night, the first thing that hit my eye was a coastal flood warning! Then they said it was going to be cold and rainy.

The festival grounds are right down the road from an area where the road is frequently flooded, even when there doesn't seem to be much rain. In other words, it's very near sea level. Add rain and flood warnings to that equation, and it sounds pretty unappealing.

We could still go next weekend, but Holly has two knitting classes in Baltimore she's going to, so there won't be any transportation.

So that's it for this year. I've missed out!

So, I'm at home, and I'm planning to have some chunky soup (Chicken, broccoli, cheese) for dinner. The heat is on here, but if I don't open a window, it's overwhelming, so the window is open letting all the damp in, and making my apartment feel chilly and wet.

Actually, I enjoy the seasons, and the differences in weather around here. In a weird kind of way, I enjoy having weather like this from time to time. It's interesting and different, feels like Fall, and is a reason to wear a sweater. So, it's kind of good in it's own way. I just wish it would have done it next weekend, or sometime when I wasn't planning on walking around in the dirt all day.

So, I'm making the best of a bad situation by knitting my sweater and watching cool stuff from my DVR and cleaning it out because there's not much of anything I want to watch on TV.

I'm knitting the sweater from the top down and I've gotten to about two or three inches below the armhole, and I still haven't finished using up two whole balls of yarn! Since I ordered 15, I think I'm going to have some left over! Which is a good thing because I'm sure I'll be able to think of several things I'd love to knit once I see how much is left over.

I know. It's a slow news day, so here's something you might enjoy:


Have a great week!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Monsoon!

I give up. I've been denying it for a while, and we were lucky enough to get a break from it for the Fall Fiber Fest, but it looks like monsoon season is really here to stay in Northern Virginia (or NoVA, as the natives call it).

It's been raining almost nonstop (at least it seems that way) ever since FFF, and there was considerable rain before that. I'm sure I remember seeing some actual sun within the last two weeks, but I couldn't say I did with any degree of certainty.

Rain doesn't usually bother me too much, but it doesn't usually go on for so long. Not without a break every so often.

Another thing that's got me down is that I went to the library yesterday, continued by a trip to CVS, and then swung by Safeway for some groceries. That's a decent walk for me. I haven't gotten to the depressing part yet.

On the way, the very first time I stepped in a puddle (well, not really a puddle, just something about a quarter inch deep), my sock was instantly soaked with cold water! Well, the toes were instantly soaked. It took a little more walking before the top of the sock was soaking the bottom of my jeans.

It really shouldn't be doing that, and I examined the offending left shoe when I got home. These are fairly new shoes with beautiful leather tops that show no wear, mind you. Not a scuff. They look totally and completely brand new! But there is a crack across the sole all the way across, under the ball of my foot! It's completely invisible unless you bend the sole to expose it. But it does a great job of letting water in!

These are nearly new shoes! And I really can't afford new ones!

OK, OK, I know I have a batch of shoes that don't really fit me well anymore that I haven't thrown out, so I can probably find something to wear.

But why should I have to? I mean, these shoes are nearly new!

So, we have a monsoon and a decided lack of shoes!

I should be thankful that I had the foresight to buy some tall rubber boots. I don't want to wear the boots, though, I want to wear my shoes!

And then I think that if that's my biggest problem, I'm really lucky! I should quit whining, and buck up.

But we were planning to go to the Maryland Renaissance Festival this weekend, and it's supposed to rain right through Sunday.

This is depressing!

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I broke down and started to knit my new sweater today. So far, I have about an inch of the back done. Photos when there's a bit more to show. At least this isn't a Christmas present, and I can take photos and show them.

As with all self-patterning yarn, I'm enjoying watching the patterns emerge as I knit. Yes, I know. Fun for the feeble minded!

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I've been meaning to mention this ever since I noticed this about a month ago.

Without fanfare or any notice whatsoever, a new needle size has turned up in the Knit Picks catalog for their Options interchangeable knitting needles, and it's an important size!

Local yarn stores (mostly) carry size 10-1/2 needles, but the chain craft stores like Michaels, AC Moore, and JoAnn Fabrics seem to have buyers who don't actually know anything about knitting needles, so there are never any size 10-1/2 needles!

There's a big leap in size from 10 to 11! Size 10-1/2 helps, but there's still a big size difference between 10-1/2 and 11!

Knit Picks has brought back the size 10-3/4 needle!

If you order a set of any of the Options needles (nickel plated, Zephyr, or Harmony), you won't get 10-3/4 tips, but they're suddenly available to order from their catalog in all those varieties!

I feel like dancing in the street! This calls for a celebration!

And here's something else to celebrate: Laurie Perry (Crazy Aunt Purl) has finished another book! She turned it in earlier this week, and it's already available on Amazon for advance order!

And I love the title! It's called Home is Where the Wine Is.



You can read more about it at the above links.

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Dollhouse is, sadly, not on tonight. In a way, that's a good thing because there are two other things I want to watch at the time it would normally be on. Three if you count Stargate Universe (which also comes on later, so I can catch it then). Universe, by the way, has moved on from it's initial, never-ending episode called Air, and is now into Darkness. It's been pretty elemental, so far. Oh, and there's the second episode of the new season on Sanctuary, while we're on the subject of SyFy.

Normally, I watch Ghost Whisperer at 8, followed by Medium and Dollhouse at 9.

What's throwing a monkey wrench into this schedule is Ugly Betty.

OK, I know it's not science fiction or even fantasy. I know it's really a prime-time soap, but I really like it. It was worth watching in the past just to see Christopher Gorham. It's probably good that they moved it from Thursday night, because I'm already missing Grey's Anatomy because of the pile-up of great shows, but why couldn't they have moved it to Tuesday, when there's nothing at all worth watching anywhere on TV!? Or, failing that, Wednesday at 9 or even 8 is a good time for me. The only thing really worth watching on Wednesday is Eastwick. With any luck, Betty will be on at 8 in the future, and won't mess up my schedule.

Oh, well. Tonight is jammed with great things to watch. I'm going to sit and knit in front of the tube this evening! Again! One of my favorite things to do!

Don't forget to keep your eyes open for Halloween programming! There are so many networks that are putting up lots of holiday shows! Too many to really list.

Oh, and here's something I was talking about with Holly, Everett and Jeff at the FFF almost two weeks ago. We all enjoyed it so much then, I thought I'd rerun it!


Have a great Friday evening!


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Addition:

Canada is issuing a silver $4 coin picturing a Tyrannosaurus Rex!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Cold, Rainy, Thursday

It's overcast, chilly and rainy here. The perfect day to stay inside.

Unfortunately, I had to go out.

The good news is:

The yarn for the sweater I'm going to make for myself arrived today. It's beautiful!

I picked up the instructions for the sweater from the library today (part of the reason I had to go out). I plan to actually buy the book, but that won't happen until a new influx of money next month. Here's the book:


The sweater I plan to make looks roughly like this:


I would want to make the neckline higher, with a little less negative ease, and make it a bit longer and add pockets, but this is the basic idea. And the yarn I got is the yarn that I made this set out of:


Sorry to repeat all this because I blogged about it the other day, but I didn't want you to have to search for the photos.

The buttons I'll probably use for this arrived yesterday. Steve has started casting things in pewter, and he sent me some shiny, silver-looking, tiny buttons with stars on them, and it suddenly occurs to me that this would be a perfect place to put them.

He also sent me some shiny, silver-looking buttons that are larger and have dragons on them! I'm excited! They're beautiful!

The bad news is that I finished the knitting on Holly's birthday present the other day, and started another project for her for Christmas, and I feel that I should finish that project before I start another one.

On the other hand, I will need to buy some beads to finish it, and I won't be able to afford them until next month, so I could probably talk myself into abandoning that project at any time, since I won't be able to finish it for a while, anyway.

I should mention here that I'm not going to say anything else about the project for Holly, so don't even bother to ask me about it! At least not on my blog.

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So, what this means is that I've got piles of knitting to do during all the wonderful TV shows that will be on tonight!

There's Flash Forward, Supernatural, Fringe, and The Mentalist on network TV. All of those are new tonight!

And on SyFy, there are three episodes of Masters of Horror, which I'm assuming is a show something like the Twilight Zone.

Be sure to check your local listings. Some of those things are on at the same time. I hope you have a DVR or TiVO! I do!

What could be more perfect? It's chilly and wet outside, but it's warm and snug inside with lots of fabulous stuff to watch on TV and more knitting than I can possibly do!

I hope your evening is as great as mine will be!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Quick Note for Knitters

Not enough time to knit? Desperately trying to finish up all the Christmas projects you have planned?

Here's the solution!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Happy Columbus Day!

Happy Columbus Day, particularly to those of you who have a day off work!

For this blog, it's going to be a Miscellaneous Monday. And to kick off this insanity, here's a great photo with a great story to go with it:

Although, I must say that the photo sort of says it all!

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For those of you who were worried, I found an article that proves that the 21st of December in 2012 will not be the end of the world. According to the article, the people on the History Channel have just misinterpreted some things.

Well, I'm certainly relieved!

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Now we have several different items about knitting.

If you're a knitter and also into fashion, you're in luck this year. Knits are big in both senses of the word in fashion at the moment! Read more about it here!

Knitstorming hits the news in this article.

Has your stash reached SABLE (Stash Acquired Beyond Life Expectancy) proportions? Read about yet another scheme to hide your addiction here.

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I'm busy! Sorry! Otherwise I would be blogging more.

This past week, I had a lot going on that I couldn't control, including: having my kitchen completely redone (they ripped things out to the point where only the walls were left--I'm still moving stuff back into it), a dental appointment, and a doctor's appointment. That's on top of the normal stuff.

I'm currently working on the outside cover for Volume 3 of the Steve Canyon DVDs.

I'm not only knitting, but also designing Christmas presents. I'd love to discuss it more here, but can't for obvious reasons. I have just a bit of the toe to do to finish Holly's birthday present socks. The Christmas present socks are done and were delivered on Saturday. She knew all about them and even picked the colors for them, so I saw no reason why she shouldn't be enjoying them right now. On the subject of socks, that leaves only Malaia's socks to do.

But I'm trying to focus on Christmas stockings for all those that I haven't made them for. Which means that you can forget about it, Malaia. I already gave you and John yours.

But that leaves me trying to figure out how to make a festive Christmas stocking in Robin's favorite color, which is black! I am piecing together a concept for that little by little. Actually, I had a concept a while ago. I just have to find the yarn and stuff to put it into practice. Last year, I gave him a black Santa hat.

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There's a new Heroes on tonight! As well as a new Big Bang Theory.

Dead Like Me: Life After Death will be on the SyFy Channel at 5 (locally) in case you missed it the first time it was on, and will be followed by four episodes of Ghost Whisperer.

Have a great evening!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

I'll Pass, for Today

Well, today was another day that I had to get up early.

At this point, I'm so tired that I can hardly focus my eyes, I can't tell if I need to eat or sleep more, and my brain just isn't working. I tried to get some sleep earlier, but my sinuses decided to try to drown me, and I don't sleep well when drowning.

I need some food and sleep, and some time to unwind and recover.

So, what I'm trying to say is that I'm not going to be putting up much of a post today.

Flash Forward will be on tonight, as will Supernatural, Fringe and The Mentalist.

Enjoy!

I'm going to veg out.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Catch-Up

I'm sorry I haven't posted much lately. There's been so much happening.

I went to the Fall Fiber Fest on Saturday, and I'll have to write about that in another post because I have had so much happening and not enough time to write about it.

The apartment complex I live in ripped out my whole kitchen yesterday (that's right, nothing but walls left at one point) and put in a whole new one. That means that I had to remove everything from the entire kitchen on Monday! There was a lot more in that kitchen than I had thought there was! It took me hours to package everything and drag it into the living room on Monday! I didn't want to start the moving project early because then the kitchen would have been unusable for making or finding food, and since I had grossly underestimated how much was actually there, it was almost 5 am before I got a chance to get to sleep.

Lucky for me, I woke up at a bit before 8 am (after a generous three hours of sleep) to let the workmen in. Then I had to get ready to get out of here at 9 to catch the bus. Well, I missed it, but I caught the next one and got to my dentist's appointment precisely, on the dot on time rather than a bit early.

Once I got there, I was disappointed to discover that they planned to clean my teeth rather than start on fixing the two that have a problem in the front.

I've had my teeth cleaned before, and usually wind up with the area where the teeth and gums meet being a little irritated by the process, but this time, I went out of there with my whole mouth sore. Most of the damage seems to have been done by the back of the tool pressing or rubbing on other parts of my mouth. I have a big sore spot next to my tongue!

Then, I used my day pass for the bus to go to WalMart to get a lot of stuff, but especially the calcium and mineral pills I need. Well, they had all the other stuff, but not the calcium, which is what I really needed right away, and what I have to find somewhere else immediately. I'm disappointed!

Oh, and I noticed that they don't carry Simply Soft Eco yarn anymore! I'm really disappointed with that, too! They do have Simply Soft back again (at a significantly higher price than they did have), but this particular WalMart never had a good selection of either, and the situation has only gotten worse.

I was thinking about knitting a scarf with some beads on it, and checked their selection, and found some very interesting beads there. I may ultimately buy the beads for the scarf from them.

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When I got home from the FFF, I found a catalog from Herrshners in the mail! That wouldn't usually be cause for rejoicing, but this is their special Annual Fall Yarn Sale issue, and they have some wonderful yarns! Yes, yes, I know that their usual catalog shows lots of Red Heart Super Saver and other such junk, but (previously unknown to me) they actually carry a lot of yarn that's made of wool, silk, and other wonderful fibers! I had no idea!

They had Moda Dea Silk'n Wool for $1.99 per ball! Unfortunately, with the stuff going on with the kitchen, I didn't call them right away to order, and they sold out of all the colors except pink by the time I called today. But there's so much stuff in the catalog I want at great prices that I'm going to have to rethink and regroup and place an order for something else.

I just looked at the yarn sale page that I put a link for above, and found the Moda Dea Sassy Stripes (I want some in the color Swish) yarn I wanted on sale for about $3 per ball instead of $5 (I'm rounding off). Which reduces the cost of the yarn for a whole sweater from about $75 to about $45! The shipping for that would be $11. I'm really tempted! The question is: can I afford it?

This is the yarn (in the same color) that I used to make the hat/scarf/mittens/boot topper set shown here:



I love this set! And I would really love to have a sweater from the same yarn. Yes, I know it's acrylic, but it's so pretty! And it would look so good with the Celtic knot sweater that is almost finished that I did last Winter! Here's a detail photo of that sweater:


The yarn is actually an off white color with tweedy neps in light and dark blue. I really have to finish this!

Soon!

I'd like to Knit the Sassy Stripes yarn in the pattern from Custom Knits that looks like this:

I would want to make the neckline much higher, with a little less negative ease, and make it a bit longer and add pockets, but this is the basic idea.

I'm also interested in the Red Heart Heart & Sole yarn in the color Rustica. I'd like to make a scarf (with beads), hat and mitts out of this. The Faded Jeans color is pretty, too, and I even like the Antique Rose colorway, in spite of the fact that I'm not really into pink. Enough of it to make all that would be about $28, plus about $10 shipping.

Decisions, decisions.

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Warning: Spoilers! Do not proceed unless you have already seen Stargate Universe!

I did get to see Stargate Universe on Friday, and I said I'm going to do a review of it, so here goes:

On Friday, SyFy aired the premiere two hours of Stargate Universe. The episode was titled Air, and was intended to be broken into two one-hour episodes (even though they were shown back-to-back as if it was one episode), so it was actually Air, Part 1 and Air Part 2. We'll be getting to see Air, Part 3 on Friday. I was beginning to wonder if they'd all be titled Air, but looking ahead on the schedule, I find that, no, they will have other titles.

The two episodes were very different. In the case of the second one, this was a relief.

Part 1 looks like it was probably a dynamite story when it was written and performed! Then it looks like a network executive got hold of it and decided that it wasn't exciting enough, so they butchered it.

I was timing some of this, and discovered that the commercials were only lasting about three or four minutes, but that the show in between was lasting for about five minutes before the next commercial. Which means that they really crammed every minute of commercials into it that they possibly could. I'm guessing that there was between 20 and 25 minutes of commercials in that hour. Possibly more.

If it had started with Eli Wallace solving the puzzle in the video game and then having General O'Neil show up on his doorstep, it would have been the best opening I've ever seen of a new show!

But I'm sure some network exec (and in this context, "exec" means "blithering idiot") thought that it didn't have enough action in the beginning, so they put people flying out of a Stargate and landing on each other and sustaining injury without any idea of why or how.

To begin with, ever since 1998 (that's eleven years, people), we've been seeing people walk into the Stargate on one end, and then walk out of it on the other end. Suddenly, people are walking into the Stargate, and flying out of it as if they'd been shot from a canon!

Reality check: have the execs even ever seen any Stargate episode?

OK, so to get there they had to dial nine symbols, rather than seven or even eight, so maybe this is different. Not likely, but possible. Putting all this "action" in the beginning with no explanation makes it eminently forgettable, though.

After viewing it all once, I forgot it entirely, and the memorable beginning came when Eli won the computer game. I almost fell off my chair laughing when Eli asked "If I don't sign it, what are you going to do to me?" and O'Neil said "We'll beam you up to our spaceship!" Eli laughed, too, but he was laughing because he thought they couldn't do it, while I was laughing because I knew they could and would!

Providing a flashback was, in my opinion, not a good move in this case, but part of the reason I say that is that the whole first hour was entirely flashbacks and flashforwards. Considering that the times between commercials didn't seem to be much longer than five minutes, on average, and that during each segment they showed at least three different time periods, no single scene was longer than about two minutes, and it was chopped up to the point that it lacked coherency.

It was so chopped up that it was impossible to follow the action!

In one scene, we see a man standing in his (or somebody else's?) kitchen having a conversation. He passes out (why?), and lands, not on the floor, but on a space ship!

Eli is on a ship. Then, inexplicably, there are explosions and they say they're under attack and have to escape. They escape, but the planet they're on explodes. What happened? Planet?

Air, Part 1 was so chopped up and schizophrenic that I found it very difficult to follow. Even after five viewings!

It looked to me (on first viewing) like they went through the Stargate at least five times! And traveled on an assortment of about 7 ships!

After ten more views, I think what happened is that they traveled on a human-made ship to a planet and then traveled from there through a Stargate to a ship.

But I couldn't swear to it.

I think that if it had been shown in time sequence, rather than crazy-nightmare-insanity sequence it would have probably been the best premier of a show that I've ever seen. The acting was great, the actual story was (I think, if I've pieced it together correctly) probably fabulous and the characters seem interesting.

I simply can't believe that anyone could take such great actors, and such a fabulous story, and manage to mangle it as badly as they did! I think they actually did us a favor by including so many commercials because they really only mangled a bit more than a half hour instead of the the more usual 3/4 of an hour.

Air, Part 2 settled down and told it's story in a logical, workmanlike, comprehensible way, so it was much better than the first part!

I won't give away the overall story (which would be difficult, even if I really wanted to do that), but it looks like the series will have great characters, good stories, drama and humor, just like the original series, which is still some of my favorite TV ever.

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Wednesday evenings have turned into a barren wilderness of nothing for science fiction and fantasy fans with one huge, enormous exception.

Eastwick is shaping up to be one of the best fantasy shows on television, ever. The best part of all this is that it is a type of story that will appeal to a much larger audience than the typical fantasy show, and maybe get some new people interested!

I can't wait to see what they're up to tonight!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

It's October, and More Tall Ships!

It's the first day of October!

Have a blast this month!

John sent me some photos from the tall ship escapade I blogged about last week.

Here's another one of me.


And one of John. Here, you can see him singing the Gilliland's Isle song he wrote.


I went on about what a cutie he was at the time, to the point where I think he started getting annoyed with me, but he really was irresistible! The thing that he seemed proudest of about this photo was that he was wearing the "Klatu Barada Nickto" shirt.

I have to apologize. These photos were taken with a little 110 camera I had. I really should have had a better camera, but then again, I don't think John had a camera at all at the time, so if I hadn't had that one, we wouldn't have had any photos at all.

Wow! I wish I could be that young again!

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Sorry I didn't get a post up yesterday. I was busy working on the covers for the third volume of Steve Canyon on DVD, and got carried away. I think this one is going to look good! And I wish I could talk about it, but John likes to get information on the DVDs out first, so I can't say anything. But you can get the latest info at the above link, which will take you to the general blog. The latest post is still the one about Doug Drexler with the link to the article he did about me.

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I'm getting so excited about the upcoming Fall Fiber Fest this weekend! I. Just. Can't. Wait!

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There's also a science fiction convention coming up this weekend in San Jose! It's called Silicon! What a perfect name for an SF con! Wish I could go, but wouldn't miss FFF for anything!

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I hope you didn't miss the second episode of Eastwick last night. I was every bit as good as the first, and I totally enjoyed it!

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Well, Halloween is on it's way, and The SyFy channel is showing off Star Wars pumpkins for Halloween. You really have to see these! Example below.


Have a great time watching Flash Forward, Fringe, and Supernatural tonight. I know I will!

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