Wednesday, July 30, 2008

My Brain is Going to Explode ...

... from all these questions. You know how much I hate thinking. It taxes what little resources I have left.

What is your favorite supper for a hot summer evening? This is a hard one, as Hubster and I don't eat much of anything anymore. I even asked him what the answer is, and he had no idea; instead, he rambled on about his favorite meal when he was a kid. I don't give a flying fuck about what he ate. His parents and I have a mutual hate society going on, so the less I hear about anything having to do with them, the better. That being said, the only thing I can think of is anything that doesn't require cooking indoors, which boils down to BBQ. Because we don't have A/C, if this little house heats up, we're doomed.

And with that, I have to go take a shower because Emma has bathed me with her doggie love kisses, which means I smell like a wet dog/person. Totally unacceptable for taking her to her puppy classes. Or maybe that's the one place where nobody realizes how bad they smell.

She just stole my slipper off my foot and ran across the room with it, head held high and prancing. The little shit.

'Scuse me.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Just When You Think You're Getting Ahead ...

... you get blindsided by a bucket of shit falling right in your lap.

It all started this morning when I got up and found Hubster sitting on the couch, staring at his computer and not doing much of anything. The TV was off; the room was absolutely silent. Emma had run him out of bed last night, so he came to sleep on the couch so he could get some rest. It turns out that he was sick, and it just got worse as the day progressed.

I should have known something was coming. He didn't finish taking all the pictures for the update, so I had expected him to do it today. Not a chance. He couldn't even get off the couch, so I put Emma next to him; they were both sound asleep in a matter of minutes. Then I began feeling crappy myself and sat down in my chair to try and do some bookwork. No go. I couldn't get motivated to do much of anything, not even knit. I did knit last night while he was taking pictures, but today was set aside to finish the update. All I finished were a few naps.

Needless to say, nothing is getting posted. As I stated before, if I try to do anything when I'm tired (or sick), I make mistakes. So what I've decided to do is have the update on Thursday. We're resting tonight and tomorrow, then we'll finish up the loose ends on Wednesday. I hate to do this to the vendors who have waited so patiently, but when it's me doing all the bookwork and computer listing and him doing all the photography and coding, all it takes is a blip in your carefully planned life and schedule to fuck everything up.

I'm trying to find some dyers who are willing to dye up some special yarns so we may have a sock yarn club. If any of you are dyers and wish to participate, please email me. I'd like to do a theme of some kind; I'm certainly open to suggestions.

Emma has a huge red spot and bump on her head. First, she was playing with her blankie and wool toy when she went toppling over the edge of her bed, whacking her head on the lever for the recliner. Then I went into the bathroom and shut the door all the way. The next thing I knew, there was a huge BANG! and the door shuddered. After that, there was scratching at the door, but I couldn't open it. She had spotted me going in there and charged the door, trying to get in before I shut it. I feel terrible. Right now, she's in her crate snoring away. I'll take her out in a little while when I go lay down. She's claimed Hubster's side of the bed for herself, which is why he got run out of bed last night. She seems to have figured out that licking his ear drives him nuts and causes him to sit up straight in bed, giving her a chance to scoot into the warm spot where he was laying. Anybody who says bullies aren't intelligent obviously haven't interacted with one.

On the bright side of things, that weird dude hasn't shown up again. Thanks for all your comments and ideas about why he was there; I simply don't know what he was doing. I've been keeping my eyes open for intruders, but everything has been quiet on the western front.

Tomorrow is my grandma's 90th birthday, so I'll be making her a tray of lasagna and a cake. As to when I'll be taking it over, I don't know (it will probably be next week before I can make them). If Hubster is up to it, we might drive Emma over there to visit. Mom is waiting for the results of some tests she took. Some of them were from her gyno; she not only got her cooter rooted, she's facing surgery for a prolapsed uterus (which she blames me for - I guess I tipped it or something when I was in it). She also has a cataract in one of her eyes which needs to be removed, and she has to have some more testing done for various things. Sigh. More family shit I don't need, and I can't be over there to take care of both her and my grandma. I don't have the strength, and I also can't leave Hubster alone with Emma all day. That little sausage is a bundle of energy who demands constant attention. She also needs constant supervision as she's developed a taste for electric cords, my expensive dining room set (which is now not worth the money it would take to haul it out of the house, Ethan Allen or not), our slippers, the drapes, my feet, my underwear, any clothes you happen to take off and drop on the floor, and anything else she can fit in that enormous maw of hers. It's all worth it, though. She's so damned cute and comical that I can't imagine life without her.

Now I have to go make Hubster some broth, find something for dinner for myself, and then sit down for the rest of the evening. I think this will be one of the rare times I go to bed early.

Mark your calendars. This won't happen again any time soon.

I have decreed it to be so.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Late as Usual

I just wanted to let you all know that the update I had planned for tonight/tomorrow isn't finished yet. Most of the items are photographed; I have to finish the logging and tagging, and then I'll write the descriptions and upload everything. I'll finish it up during the day and evening on Monday. I'm just exhausted tonight (and, in fact, just woke up), so I don't want to work on it while I'm this tired. That's when I do stupid things.

Something strange also just happened. Hubster went running out of the house (I was typing a reply to a Ravelry flame war), and then I heard him demanding answers from someone in the driveway. I went to the front door and pushed Emma back (I didn't want anybody to see her), and when I got outside, there was some guy backing away from Hubster and babbling as fast as he could. It turns out that he was on his belly and crawling under our truck; he told Hubster that he thought he had lost his wallet either in our driveway or under the truck. What? I asked (loudly) if I should call the cops, and that's when the dude said that we could write down his license plate. Hubster told the guy to give us his name and number in case we found the wallet (cough). The dude said his name was Mike and that he didn't have a phone. Then he backed up as fast as he could, jumped in his car (where someone was waiting behind the wheel - the engine was running), and they burned rubber getting out of here. I don't know what the hell the dude was doing, but he was up to no good. Now I'll have to stay up all night to make sure he doesn't come back (I'm worried about Emma). I'm truly bothered by all this and wish now I had called the cops and had Hubster keep the dirtbag here. Hubster didn't get a description of the car they were driving, so there's nothing the cops could do at this point.


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

This Week's SP12 Questions

What is(are) your favorite place(s) to knit? The Monster (the chair and a half angled perfectly so I can see the TV). I love to knit at night while I watch the court shows I've TiVo'ed during the day. Once in a while, a good movie will come on TV, so I'll watch that instead. As long as the idiot box is on, I'm happy. I really don't like knitting anywhere else. I've tried knitting groups, but I can't talk and knit at the same time. I occasionally take my knitting with me on vacation or to the hotel on prison weekends, but I'm usually too tired to get more than a row or two done.

What supplies (besides yarn & needles) make the setting perfect for knitting? Ciggies, a cuppa joe, scissors, my miniature crochet hook for picking up stitches, my bendy light that I can focus right where I'm working, stitch markers, row counter, and the TV remote control.

Wow. I need a lot of shit just to knit a sock, don't I? That's me - I've got to have everything made for a particular art (or craft) just to be able to do it. How did our ancestors do things by candlelight? I'm already getting blind as a bat even with a high-powered light focused on my work. Knitting in near-darkness? I don't think so. Oh... I have to be in my jammies to knit, too. It's rare that I knit during the day. I suppose that goes along with being a creature of the night. I also suppose it explains why I fall asleep so often while I'm knitting and drop so many stitches. I call it practice for picking up stitches in every possible permutation.

So in two hours, I get to go back to the dentist. Those lower dentures were killing me last night to the point where I couldn't even close my mouth. The uppers are better, but they still need adjustment. I hate that you can't really tell how dental work is going to feel while you're in the office. Noooooo... you have to go home, die all night, and then try to get an appointment the next day (which means you have to go back to the office) to get the fuckers fixed. I get three free adjustment visits. Let's hope he can fix them today. I hate having to go there (and I hate having to put on "real" clothes when I'd rather be in my jammies). It's necessary, though. You try drinking coffee with no teeth in. They serve a purpose other than making you look like an attractive adult when you smile - they seem to keep coffee from dribbling down your chin and on your shirt, pants, chair, etc.

We're working on yet another update for this weekend (hopefully). Tonight is photography night for Hubster and logging/tagging night for me. We've got a shitload of new vendors, a bunch of Hide and Sheep stitch markers, and something special to list. It's a long story, but suffice it to say that Dianne of Creatively Dyed and I had a falling out over her selling through the shop. As a result, I've got a box of her yarn sitting in my studio which I didn't know what to do with. I've decided that I'm going to have a one-time offering at a bargain price - $12 per skein, no matter what the fiber content. I think it normally retails for $26-28. Once it's gone, it's gone, so have at it. That will be listed this weekend as well.

Emma slept with me in bed for the first time last night (or early this morning, depending on your perspective). After running around for 10 minutes, eating my ears, slobbering all over my face, and sitting on my head, she settled down and went to sleep. When I woke up this morning (or later in the morning, depending on your perspective), she was curled up on the pillow next to my head with the covers over her. She's just too cute for words. I also took her out back yesterday with a big bowl of water and ice cubes. She's discovered the joys of dunking your head in ice-cold water and grabbing an ice cube, bringing it back into the sun, and then dropping it in a pile of weeds. Gack. It didn't seem to bother her much until she discovered that she could lay on the BBQ cover and munch on her ice cube without it getting dirty (and without her having to lay on the concrete). I'll take her out to play again when we get home from the dentist.

Speaking of which, it's time to get in the shower. I have doggie slobber to wash off my entire head and face.

She loves me.

Oh... here's a parting picture of the snorting snausage for your pleasure.

Emma Sleeping

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Thoughts and Babbling

I don't really have a lot to say today, but I thought that I would babble anyway.

Yesterday was prison day. We decided that rather than put Emma in a kennel for three days (they're not open on Sundays, and we wouldn't be home in time to get her Monday), we would leave in the morning and come straight home after my doctor's appointment. Hubster set up her playpen, made sure she had her bed, toys, water, blah blah blah, and off we went. Even though I'm normally up at that hour of the morning (5 a.m.), it seems different when you have to shower, get dressed, and get in the car to go somewhere. I was dead tired and slept for part of the way. Amazingly, we got there right on time (who knows what traffic will be like?), and Bill was waiting for me with the golf cart.

The lesson went well until one of the men voiced his displeasure at playing jazz. For reasons I won't go into, I had to shoot him down (obviously not literally, since I'm at home). After a 15-minute rampage, he backed down. Then I had to set another man straight - this one a Crip - so by the end of the lesson, I was a bit tired. After all that, I had to get blood drawn and go to the pain doctor. Oh fun. I slept all the way home, so I can't tell you about the lovely scenery. Well, actually, I can... think flat, brown, and cows.

The doctor called this morning and told me that my thyroid meds are too high, so she's lowering them. Great. I've lost some weight, and now I'll probably gain it all back. The good news, though, is that my sugar was down low, so she's not going to do anything. No needles, no pills, no nothing. Yay!

Emma continues to grow like the proverbial weed. She's almost her full height right now, but her head and chest will continue to grow for two years. She's going to be huge. I burned my leg with a ciggie yesterday (the joys of falling asleep while you're smoking), and it was blistered by the time we got home. Emma was so excited to see us that she bounced onto my lap (it's a good thing she didn't bounce on my chest, or she would have shot across the room), scrabbled with her paws on my thigh to get up on my shoulder, and tore open the blister. Sigh. Now I've got a leaky burn wound that hurts like a bitch.

Then today, we went to get my new dentures. Good news - I can eat real food again! Bad news - they hurt. It reminds me of when I had braces and they would tighten them. I have to get used to them, since they're made differently than my old ones and fit tighter. I have to go back tomorrow to get something adjusted. I think I may be taking a LOT of extra oxycontin tonight.

As for knitting, the socks are going well. I'm using a fantastic yarn from my shop by handkraft, which is made of 50% silk and 50% merino. The color is called "Grass". It's a tone-on-tone and has a slight sheen from the silk. The pattern I'm using is by Knitspot called "Luxor". It's simple as can be and makes a spectacular sock (knit and purl diamonds). I've not done a short-row heel (I usually use a heel flap), so this will be new for me.

Other than that, there's nothing at all going on. We've had delightfully cool weather (in the 60's), but it's supposed to warm up this week. I don't think it will be as hot as it was some weeks ago, though, so I suppose we'll all live. Emma was out in the backyard and eyeing up the pool, so maybe I'll have to buy her a lifejacket so she can swim. Bullies swim like stones, but if I can keep her afloat, it will be a blast to swim with her.

Time to go knit before I fall asleep. Sorry for being so boring, but my life is kind of quiet for a change.

Three oxys, and I'll be quiet as a mouse.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Life With Emma and Other Assorted Useless Shit

It just occurred to me that I've missed answering not one, but TWO SP12 questions. My poor swap pal. She must think I'm a horrible flake and/or typist. The first one, sometimes. The second one, no. I'm actually an exceptional typist. I just haven't had the time to blog lately. With that having been said, here goes:

1) Where is your favorite place to go for vacation/holiday? Disneyland, along with San Diego on the same trip.

2) Where is one place you’d like to go? Anywhere I can swim with dolphins.

(Emma is on Daddy's lap, licking his ear and trying to wake him up.)

Okie dokie. Here is the question for this week:

What is your favorite type of project to take along on holiday/vacation? Socks.

(Daddy woke up for a minute, petted Emma, and fell back asleep; Emma is planning a counterattack.)

As for a story about overpacking knitting for a trip or running out of knitting, I always overpack. In fact, I've been known to bring along five or six pairs of socks to work on if I'm going to be gone a week. What usually happens is that I don't work on anything or, if I do, I get a few rows done before I fall asleep. Hence, I never run out of something to work on. I've also been known to find a yarn shop and buy something new. You know... in case I finish the five or six other projects I've brought along.

(Emma is now sucking on Daddy's chin; he's giggling like a loon.)

So what's been going on? Well, I had to cancel prison day last week because the pot roast had her first vet appointment. She's in perfect health, the ideal weight, and loves liver treats. I've never seen a dog (let alone a puppy) fall asleep on the table in the vet's office. She charmed everyone and had attention lavished on her. After her appointment, it was time to go back outside in the horrible heat that we had all week long. I was worried; bullies are prone to heatstroke and can't take temps above 80 degrees. It was 110. We hustled her into the truck where the A/C was blasting and got her home, where she promptly flopped on the couch and slept all evening.

(Emma and Daddy are now both asleep and snoring... another fun evening in the Mann household.)

Before I launch on to even more boring subjects, I've had several requests for baby pictures. I have to warn you that the pot roast is already the size of a Thanksgiving turkey. Please ignore the fat person in the pictures with her.

Emma Cuddle

She's as unladylike as her mother.

Emma Wiggle

This is how the family-size pot roast shows affection - with lots of sloppy kisses (and yes, Syd... she has puppy breath).

Emma Kiss

Yet another kiss which I can't seem to escape from. You try getting Emma off your lap when she wants to kiss you.

Emma Sleeping

Every girl needs a stuffie.

One eye open

Just like Daddy when you're trying to wake him up. One eye opens, and then you realize that he's really a zombie who isn't awake at all.

Got my rope

That's her chewy rope and the towel we went out and bought for her (she looks good in/on/eating purple). No, she doesn't have weird white eyes; Daddy fucked up the camera setting. Yes, that's my phone number; don't call and ask if you can have her. I might let you come play in the shop, though.

Speaking of the shop, we had a sale last week which went extremely well. I've also got a lot of new vendors (yes! more!) on the way. Monday is prison day, so I'll be gone this weekend (if you call, leave a message). Hubster will be taking pictures all next week since we can't work on the shop this weekend, and I'll be logging, tagging, and uploading pictures for your pleasure. I've got all kinds of cool things coming and/or here. Poor Emma has to be boarded because we'll be at the doctor's late in the afternoon. I'm worried that we won't be home in time to pick her up Monday night; it looks like she'll be in the kennel Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. Sigh. I wanted to bring her, but she can't sit in the car all day. She could probably come in the doctor's office, but it's hours between when I'm done at the prison and when my appointment is. Maybe I can figure something out... there's a cool dog/cat shop on H Street which welcomes pets... hm.

(I can't tell who's snoring louder; Daddy is slumped over on the couch, and Emma has her back feet braced against his thigh while laying on her side. Yes, her tongue is sticking out.)

Other than knitting (I started two new pairs of socks, which I'll show you if I actually finish them), I had a showdown with the beast that came out of my snatch. No, I'm not talking about lint or moths; I'm talking about our not-so-dear daughter. It seems that she's been paying for the kids' preschool and that's it. Mom is broke, and we're not far behind - we've been splitting all their expenses, and Hubster has the kids on his medical policies at work (mucho expensive premiums). Lily has to have speech therapy, which our insurance covers to a point - we're paying the remainder. All in all, everybody is being drained dry. Hubster and I ran out of money last week (literally); thank god we have overdraft protection, because we overdrafted. Quite frankly, I'm getting tired of eating sandwiches and holding my breath to see if we'll have enough money to last the entire pay period. If we didn't have so many fucking bills to pay, it wouldn't be a problem. We're being good citizens, though, and paying everything which got neglected during the nightmare a year ago. Don't worry - Emma has plenty of food, and I don't need to eat.

Anyway, the thing refused to call me, so I told Mom to pass along a message: either she called me the following evening, or I would drive until I found her. She knows I'll do it; I've done it before and always found her. So when she called the next evening, I lit into her. She thinks we're made of money and didn't understand why I should be allowed (that's what she said) to spend it on anything I wanted. Uh... excuse me? If I did have money, it would still be none of her business what I spent it on. She knows her grandmothers are broke (and with my grandma not able to walk anymore, their expenses are going up due to medical crap), and she just doesn't care. It's all about her - not us, not the kids, not Mom and Grandma - her. Or so she thinks. She likes to spout off a lot of shit about how she doesn't feel like the kids are hers (we don't let her take them anywhere because she has a nasty habit of taking off with men; who knows what would happen to those kids?), and because she feels that way, she doesn't think she should pay for them. I informed her that she did the nasty, got two buns in the oven and chose to keep them, and then popped them out her now floppy stomach (I'd like to say snatch again, but she had a C-section), and that made her their mother, like it or not. After a half-hour of railing against her, I finally got tired of hearing her snotty voice and hung up on her. Will it help? Will more money be given to my mother to help with their expenses? I don't know, but I hope so. She flat out told me she wants to marry this joker she's been dating, and I know it's because she wants to move out of Mom's house. All she does is bitch about it because things aren't the way she wants. The kid doesn't fork over a dime for rent, food, utilities - nothing. Find me a deal like that anywhere else and I'll take it myself. Sigh. I don't know how I spawned such a beast.

And so life goes on. I've got my puppy; I've got stash; I've even got some English muffins. What more do I need?

Some butter for my muffins would be nice.

Thursday, July 10, 2008


This is just a quick question for my vendors. I'll write a real post (holy shit... I'm becoming prolific again) later tonight.

For those of you whose work I put up for the first time with the recent update, please tell me if you didn't receive the vendor page instructions. I've sent a lot of them out, but I know I've missed a couple of people. I'd appreciate it. :)


Monday, July 7, 2008


Just a quick note to let you know that there is a 15% sale through Friday at Yarny Goodness:

Everything is on sale, and I've added a lot of new vendors. I've also updated a lot of existing vendors. Come on by and see if there's something you might like - things are already moving!

And that ends this public service announcement.

The other thing I wanted to say is thank you to everyone who commented about my little snoring pot roast. :) I tried to write to each of you, but some of you have your email addys hidden. That's not conducive to letter-writing. To those of you whose addys I do have, you'll be hearing from me - probably later tonight.

Right now, we're under a massive heat wave, and Emma can't take temps much above 80 (when it hits 90 in San Francisco, you know we're all ready to die). We're well above that, and with no A/C in the house, we're all suffering. We're going to buy her a little plastic wading pool because Bullies can't swim well. Because of their shape, they swim like rocks - at least, most of them do. We could sit in the pool with her and let her sit on the top seat of the steps, but that water is COLD. It would be too much of a shock to her little system. So maybe later tonight, we'll hit Le Target and get her a pool of her own.

Right now, I'm going to peel off my clothes, sit in the tub, and knit socks.

After I have a cuppa, that is.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Busy, Busy Weekend

Lots of things are happening this weekend at Chez Mann. First, since I forgot to answer the SP12 question last week, I figured I'd better answer the one for this week. Here goes:

1) What yarn (that you don’t have/haven’t used) would make your stash “complete”?
2) What yarn do you never want to be without?

1. I think that any indie yarn which I don't have is what would make my stash complete. Since my stash fills an entire room, new dyers are the ones I don't have. Who are they? Beats the hell out of me! I'm always keeping my eyes open, though, so if I see someone whose work would be a good fit for the shop, I can drop them a note.

2. I don't have an answer for this one. As you all know, I don't use commercial yarns. Even though I have some favorites in the indie world, I don't want to name them for fear of offending others who might sell through the shop. Let's put it this way - if I don't have sock yarn, I might as well not knit.

Whew. Those questions make me think, and that hurts.

So Thursday, we headed over to San Francisco International Airport to pick up our baby. When we arrived, her flight had just landed, so we had to kill about 15 minutes before she was unloaded. Once we went back into the office, they gave us a stack of papers and told us to go over to Customs (Homeland Security) in order to clear her through. That took all of 10 minutes, from the time we drove over, gave the papers to the man behind the counter, and came back. Then we were told to go into the warehouse to get our baby. Oddly enough, there was another puppy from the same breeder (she was the other one I was trying to decide upon - it was going to be either her or Emma), so Emma got to travel with her sister. Then I saw her and my heart melted all over the floor. There, in a large, sturdy carrier, were these soulful eyes peering out at us. I stuck my finger into the cage and had a paw rest on top of my hand, and then a velvety-soft muzzle rubbed against it. We picked her up and carried her out to the truck so we could get her collar on and take her to go potty. Just as we were doing that, the owners of the other puppy arrived and ran over to see our girl. They were as excited as us and absolutely thrilled to see that the babies had made the trip successfully. So, Syd:


She is absolutely the sweetest puppy in the world. We've had her two days, and she's already potty-trained. She understands "no", "come", and some other basic commands, and is truly a Velcro dog. Right now, she's laying by my feet while I type.

Here's a picture of us sock knitting:

Emma and Mommy Knitting Socks

She's the cute one.

She did really well with the fireworks last night; in fact, she completely ignored them because we did. She's literally glued to us and has to sit with me in the chair, no matter what I'm doing. And she snores with her tongue sticking out. I'm so in love that I can't stand it. She begins her puppy training classes next Friday, and I can't wait to show her off. She's now gotten up off her towel and is helping Daddy take cookies out of the oven. Oops... she's back with me now.

Other than playing with Emma, I've been working on the shop. I can't do too much at a time, but I work on it as I can. I'll be finished with the update by the end of the weekend and will have everything posted on Monday. Monday also starts a week-long sale on everything in the shop, so check in - there will be lots of fun things, both new vendors and updates to established ones. I'll put a list of all the new things to look at in the newsletter and also at the top of the home page. I also wanted to mention that anybody who placed an order this week will have it mailed out on Monday. I've just not been well, so I haven't gotten everything done. That's why I've been slow with updating. I think it will all be worth it, though.

So that's what has been consuming all my time this weekend. Thank you, everybody, for all the comments about Emma; she's even cuter in person. I'll most likely bore you all with pictures of her as she grows. I won't have a prison visit this Monday; she has her first vet appointment (I had to schedule it ASAP because if I waited, it would void her health guarantee). It's really strange to think that she lived in Russia and came all the way over here. That little pot roast has traveled more than I have; she flew over the North Pole to get here with a layover in Amsterdam (she came in on KLM). For those of you who have yarn with me, don't worry - she's not allowed in the studio where the yarn is kept, and she also won't be anywhere near it when I go to list it. Even though she has short hair, she still sheds. I also don't think you want your yarn to smell like a puppy.

So back to work on the update. I may have to take a few breaks to have Snickerdoodles, though.

And to cuddle my little snoring pot roast.