Plain Jane Knits Up A Storm

A few musings about my needlecraft hobbies - knitting, crocheting, quilting, & cross-stitch along with my other love, genealogy. While growing up, I used to HATE the term "Plain Jane", but when it comes to knitting & crocheting, I've realized that I really *am* a Plain Jane in that I don't use fancy yarns.

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Location: Northern Detroit Metro area, Michigan, United States

Saturday, August 26, 2006

A Feline MeMe

The Meezer over at Sallee's KnitNana just tagged all three of the felines in the house for a special Me-Me:

Here are the instructions: The player of this game starts with "5 weird things/habits about yourself." In the end you need to choose 5 people to be tagged and list their names. The people who get tagged need to write a blog about their 5 weird things/habits, as well as state this rule clearly, then tag 5 more victims. Don’t forget to leave your victim a comment that says "you’re tagged!" in their comments and tell them to read your blog.

So with no further ado, I'll turn the keyboard over to Tiger who has been trying to claim it all evening.

Ah, yes - finally.. I've been sitting here on Mommie's lap, occasionally hitting the space bar or other keys as she types. Wouldn't you think that she'd take the hint and go back down to her knitting? That's me up there sitting on Daddy's lap - Mommie cut the picture down so I'm the center of attention which is no more than right as everyone knows that dogs (yuck) have owners while cats, the epitome of perfection in the animal world, have staff. But she wants me to write about something weird that I do - hmmm, I think the other two cats are the weird ones. Maybe I could tell stories about them? No, Mommie says that it has to be about me. OK, here goes - no fair laughing as cats hate to be laughed at and we *do* have five pointy ends if we're upset. Numero Uno strange thing that I do is ---- wait for it ---- I get under the covers of the bed, just like Mommie & Daddy do. If Mommie is asleep, I'll tickle her cheek with my whiskers and when she brushes them away she lifts the covers just a little bit and I zoom under and curl up where it's warm. Those other two are long haired so they don't mind the cool temperatures in the winter, but my coat is short and sleek and having three quilts & a blanket over me (on top of a heated water bed) when the winter winds are howling outside is the Cat's Pajamas. Oh, dear - here come the other two. As I mentioned they are much stranger than I am so I'll let them have the keyboard for the moment.

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Hi, I'm Moki! That's a picture of me on one of my favorite sleeping places - Mommie's pillow.. I don't need to go under the covers like that wimpy Tiger because I have a long lush coat - if you look at it closely, like under a magnifier - the grey hairs look like rick-rack. They actually zig-zag. I think that's pretty unusual so I'll name that as my #1 weird thing. One nice thing about my heavy coat is that if I'm doing something naughty and Daddy tries to squirt me with the spray bottle, I don't feel it for the longest time. His hand usually gives out before I notice that anything is happening..

I've been here the longest. Mommie adopted me in the spring of 1989 when she & Daddy were working at a small shop that had mice. I lived at the shop and made life miserable for those mice until they moved out. I had a lot of adventures there - one time I was exploring the top side of the office ceiling and a tile gave way and I surfed down into Daddy's office. Boy, did he and the boss look surprised!! But then the business closed and Mommie brought me home. I like it here even if those other two pick on me from time to time. Don't they know that at 17, I'm the senior member of the tribe? If you translated that into human years, I'd probably be older than Mommie & Daddy.

Ok, #2 weird thing - I like unusual things to eat. I think that black olives are wonderful, bananas are great and I've even been known to munch a slice or two of cucumber when it's offered. Mommie & Daddy get pizza every Monday and take it over to Grandma's house, but they always bring me the box and I get to lick up all the cheese and pepperoni grease. I can tell they love me!

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OK, guys, make way for the QUEEN!!... Neither of you can possibly touch my beauty. I brought Daddy to his knees by just making a little "meow" though the bars of the cage and two layers of glass at PetSmart. Next thing Mommie knew, she was filling out adoption papers and after a few days I went home with them. At the shelter, my name was "Tigger" - can you think of a more ridiculous name for a Calico? The first couple days I was here, I made my hideout Mommie's quilting cupboard, tucked safely in behind her fabric stash and she finally got the idea that my name should be Callie - it took her long enough to figure out my clues. As I said, I'm a Calico and the whole world knows that Calicos are *different* - I ignore it when Mommie insists that all of us should come with warning labels, such slander!..

Furthermore, I reject the idea that anything I do is weird.. OK, shut up you two, no one asked for your opinions. I rule the roost around here and it's time that you two boys realized it! I don't care if I'm the smallest and youngest, I've had your numbers since I was carried in the door. I know that my purpose in life is to lounge around and look beautiful, so I'll tell people a couple more weird things about you two.. #2 for Tiger: He's what Mommie calls a "Velcro kitty" - where she is, he is. Ok, I know he gets more ear scratches than I do with my aloof act, but that's one of the prices of being ME.. #3 weird thing for Moki is that he's dumb as a box of rocks. Would you believe that when he was at that shop he actually curled up around a soldering iron and singed his tail? Then there was the time that he snuck out of the loading dock and climbed up on the muffler of a van that was heading for Ohio. If Mommie hadn't gone looking for him, he'd have been a grease spot on I-75 instead of hogging all the good grease in the pizza boxes. Would you believe that Mommie takes me upstairs for a cuddle session so he gets first crack at the box?? Anyway, before those two come back in here and take back the keyboard, I'm just going to hit publish and get this little rant on line before they can add any nasty comments about ME.. You will excuse me won't you? My coat needs a little upkeep.

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Oh, Mommie said that she's supposed to tag 5 people. I'm not sure if with cats or not, but I'm going to pass it along this way. If you're reading this and you have a cat or dog who would like to vent a little, please feel free to consider yourself tagged. Ok, now where is that POST button???............

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Another Thursday, A Few More Hats (& Scarves)

It's Thursday which means K4 meeting day and, as usual, I forgot to take a photo of what I'd been working on this week until the last minute. This time, I didn't even have time to tuck the yarn ends under things, so there they are in all their glory. They were properly run in and clipped during the first half hour of the group. The blue scarf on the left is Frances' crocheting - I just knit a simple cap in a very close shade of royal blue to go along with it.

The others are the standard window pane pattern that I've been using right along with the variegated yarn as the "windows" and the solid as the sashes. For the aqua set in the upper right, there wasn't enough of the solid aqua yarn to do the scarf, so that one will be variegated with the solid color on the ends. I'm hoping there's enough left over for the other end - it's that close to the end of the skein. The set between the blue & pink sets doesn't show up all that well, but the solid color is a deep green combined with a variegated that has green several shades of purple and beige. It's prettier than it looks here. As usual, I brought home more yarn - a dark brown variegated to work with a medium brown solid, and a denim blue to cream variegated to pair with a smoky blue. I finished most of the aqua/variegated scarf at the meeting, so hopefully, it will be done tonight and I can play with some new colors.

On the reading front, I've rediscovered Stuart Wood - a couple years ago, I read his Holly Barker series that starts with Orchid Beach and enjoyed the books. A week or so ago, I picked up another of his books in a series about Stone Barrington which was just as good. So on Tuesday's library run, I grabbed an armful and am looking forward to reading them. Looking at the author's site, I have a lot of reading pleasure ahead of me if the library has all his books {g}.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Did I Ever Mention.....

.... that I hate finishing things - sewing them together, running yarn ends in? Well, I do and I often go to lengths up to and including rewriting a pattern to eliminate as many seams and yarn ends as I can. This is all leading up to an explanation as to why you may see the occasional yarn end sticking out in the following photos. I usually do the finishing stuff at the K4 meeting because having friends to talk with while I'm doing it makes it go faster.

First, here are the two hats that I knit to go along with the scarves that Frances crocheted. Frances has been coming to the Monday afternoon knit & crochet classes this summer and she's finished, I believe, five afghans already! One of the scarves she crocheted was this color purple worsted held together with a sport weight variegated in purple, magenta, green & turquoise. It made a beautiful scarf and the plain hat will go with it so as not to draw attention from the colors in the scarf. The second scarf was plain purple so I added a bit of a pattern to the hat.

These next three photos are of the hat & scarf sets I've been working on. The blue & brown sets both use the same variegated for "window" part of the window pane hats and for the 36 rows at each end of the scarf. I like the way that they came out looking so different.

The scarf is started that will go with this hat and I brought home skeins of variegated & solid colors to make up more combinations. Besides the enjoyment I get from just the knitting process, it's fun to play with the colors to make each set individual.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Hats, Hats & More Scarves

No photos today, but I've been working along on more hats & scarves for the K4 project. As warm as it's been in South-east Michigan this week - temperatures in the mid to high 90s with heat indexes up to 106°! - all too soon, winter will be upon us and there will be people in need of warm winter wear. I turned in four sets of matching hats & scarves at the K4 meeting on yesterday afternoon and have finished three more hats since then. Frances, who is one of my Monday afternoon students, crocheted two purple scarves and two of the hats I just knit will match them to create sets. The other hat is a window pane design in smoky blue combined with a variegated. The scarf, which I cast on about 15 minutes ago will have the variegated for about 36 rows on either end and the solid blue in the middle. It keeps me busy and out of mischief {g}....

Acrylics Anon/a