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13 posts from June 2007

OH MY GODJune 30, 2007

Okay, you people. PEOPLE!

I am overwhelmed. In one day (ONE DAY) you gave enough to cover Digit's vet bills already incurred and those that are planned for the near future. We don't have to put any of the bills on the charge card. NONE OF THEM.

How did you do it? The majority of you gave $10 and $20, and it just added up! A few people gave more, and made me literally gasp, looking at the screen.

And the thought occurred to me that I could just keep it going. You could keep pouring your hard-earned dollars into my paypal account, and Lala and I could eat sushi every night. I could get a bicycle! She could buy a windmill!

BUT. I believe you all took care of Digit because you are good, and kind, and sweet, and wonderful, and it would be wrong to take advantage of even one dollar that has been sent. Even though I really like to eat sushi. {Shoot.} 

So I was going to just shut down the whole drawing today and while jumping up and down and squealing like one of our kittens, tell you that WE HAVE THE MONEY OH MY GOD I CAN'T BELIEVE IT!!! But Lala mentioned that some of you who have yet to read this site this week might still want to get in on the raffle action, so here's what I think.

If you still want to get in on the sweater drawing (see below for details), please do so. But from here on out, all monies raised will go to the Milo Foundation and Best Friends Animal Society. Harriet came from Milo, and I've been to Best Friends and I think it's one of the best places in the whole wide world. I'll do the drawing next week (probably next weekend, Saturday?), and I'll let you know then how much we'll be donating.


I've been at work the last few days, and my coworkers can't get over all this. First they couldn't believe the Digit-man story, and then, as I posted the drawing idea, they could NOT believe that you, my internet friends, were giving so sweetly, so generously, so quickly.  I could believe it, because I know the power of the knitters, but just barely, and I am still head-flappingly astounded.

So here, if you want in on the drawing, click here. $10/chance (so 5 chances for $50, etc.), as many chances as you'd like. You wonderful people, you.

Update: Digit came home today! Woot! He did very well during his small surgery (just to patch up his rear end), and is recovering well. We expect him to be strong enough for a second, bigger surgery in about two weeks. Sadly, I am at work, and I haven't seen him yet, but I know Lala tucked him up in the front room with his new kitty bed (I've been sleeping with the interior cushion for the last three nights, so it will smell like me), and by now he's seen the kittens (oh, how I wish I'd been there for that). He's in the front glassed-in porch while he recovers -- from there he'll be able to look into the house and keep an eye on us at all times, but he'll be safe from irritating dogs AND kittens. And he'll be able to keep an eye on the neighborhood, as well. Should work. I hope. I'm a little scared of the patented YOWL if he doesn't like it, but we'll find out tonight.

Oh, you blessed people.

Thank you. 

Digit Drawing!June 29, 2007


HE LOOKS SO MUCH BETTER. Really, Lala told me that the reason she had yelled and called me in to the kitchen that night was that she didn't think that he would live until I got out of bed to see him. Now he just looks like a weak little Digit with a too-big fur suit.  They took a 2inch foxtail out of his eye, poor thing, and he'll be having surgery this afternoon to further clean out his back-end wound, but the major surgery will be put off until he's gone home and gotten stronger. He has several bladder stones the size of peach pits, and a possible GI bleed, but I'm happy to say they've located his heart, and it is, indeed, beating. He is not a zombie!

And because several (more than several, you sweet things) people have mentioned to me that I should ask for help if needed, or offer a pattern for sale, to help with Digit-costs, I have been thinking about proposing something. At first, it made me feel funny to think about. And I don't want to write a pattern, just don't have time right now, although a pattern for a CalTrans vest for kitties was suggested.....

But honestly, we're broker than broke right now. Digit is going to cost in the thousands by the time this is all done, and we just ain't got it. We'll charge it, of course, because pet injuries are what plastic was made for (that and trips to Europe, but I've curtailed that habit in recent years.....).

But hey. What about this?

I've got some sweaters I don't wear, even though they're kinda nice.

Maybe you'd like to enter a wee drawing to help defray vet bills?

Let's say every $10 gets your name in the hat, so $40 would get you four entries. Although, to be honest, $2 would be appreciated at this point.

Let's see what we're offering:

The Rowan Bomber, from Denim People



Soft, in Paton's Classic Merino, it's only been worn once. It WILL pill, because it's Classic Merino, but it will just get softer.

Artfibers Alpaca




This is my own design, in alpaca yarn, Jadis, from Artfibers. It's sexy and fun, but it's a little too warm for very, very hot-blooded me. I get grumpy wearing it, because I get too hot, and then no one likes being around me, so it's better if a cool-blooded person wears it, I think. Worn once at Stitches and OHMYGOD was it hot in that convention center.

Philosopher's Wool Kilim Jacket


I know, right? But doodles, it's just too hot for me. And honestly, it's not that soft, and I made it to LEARN two-handed stranded knitting, so if you win this, you will see its flaws. But it IS nice and I'm proud of it. But I don't live in the snow. You should have it. Worn once out, and once when it was REALLY cold in the house.

So, that's what I'm thinking. Make a donation by clicking the button below, and earn my undying love. No, wait, you already have that. You might win a sweater? Maybe? And you'll know that you're helping us, and more importantly, Digit-man. Otherwise known as Ole Winky.


We Are OverwhelmedJune 28, 2007

By your kindnesses, by your responses, by one darling Paypal donor who shall remain anonymous, by the huge amount of love you've sent our way. I have a theory that Digit can only be helped and boosted by what you're sending his way (if you're late joining us, yes, THAT Digit).

Because updates have been requested, I just talked to the doctor -- Digit's resting today, still on IV fluids and antibiotics. He ate a little bit, which is huge, and they're syringe feeding him, as well. He has bladder stones as big as peach pits which will have to be removed when he's strong enough for surgery, which he isn't yet, and he has something wrong with his stomach, perhaps a GI bleed, possibly from ulcers.

Add to that the massive wound in his tail end, it sounds like a lot, and sounds like very little, after having made his way home.

Mom has a theory that I like the best. It was early March when he disappeared -- it was cold then. Perhaps he was out one chilly evening, and jumped into the back of a moving truck, or a pickup, or an open window of a warm-looking sedan, and hitched an accidental ride to who-knows-where. That makes more sense than someone picking him up and dumping him far away..... Who knows where he went? I doubt he went over one of our bridges, but I think he went far. Very far.

But now I know where he is. And I get to see him when I get off work! Can't WAIT.

Also, Erika made me a lolcat. (And you should go see hers....)


HAAA! (This was taken when he was big and tough. Will take pics of him soon, and then we'll watch him get better together, shall we?)

You all are darlings, and I love you. Really.

Look What Dragged The Cat InJune 27, 2007

You should sit down.

No, really, you should.

Last night, at 11:37, Lala burst into our room. I was sound asleep. She yelled, "Rachael! GET UP NOW! You need to come out here!"

My reaction was "WE DON'T HAVE A FIRE EXTINGUISHER!" but I was still sleep-unverbal, so I think I said something more like, "Wha? The hell?"

She said, still dragging me, that nothing was wrong but that I had to come RIGHT NOW. I decided if she was going to show me something on the internet I would f*&king kill her.

But no. She led me into the kitchen and showed me what was on the floor.


My boy. My beloved man-cat, who disappeared FOUR MONTHS ago. End of February, beginning of March. Fifteen WEEKS ago. Eulogized here. Love of my life, huge piece of my heart, part of ME, one of the best parts of me, my crotchety cranky baby-cat who was BACK.

Sitting, no, swaying on the kitchen floor.

Lala said she'd heard him crying at the back door, as he always did, just as she was getting ready to turn in. She'd had to check his feet for the extra toes before she believed it was really him.

I dropped to my knees, and he started to purr, even though he could barely raise his head. I was crying the second I saw him, and shaking seconds after that. I've had six or seven dreams since he "died" in which he showed up, was just there, and I looked up at Lala and told her to tell me I wasn't dreaming. She said I wasn't.

She ran around and did all the things I couldn't do, got water, got two kinds of food, got towels.... I couldn't let him go, couldn't stop crying, couldn't stop touching him everywhere, trying to figure out what the hell had happened to him.

See, that cat and me, well, we're a pair. I'm his heart, and he's mine. He always comes back, always makes his way back. I knew he hadn't run away, because he's a one-man cat, and I'm that one man. We sleep paw-in-hand. I might be the only thing he loves besides his freedom.

I felt him everywhere -- no immediate signs of trauma or a car accident -- he could support weight on all four legs, although he had no strength. One eye was gummed shut, but I could see the eye was still there, and when pried open, looked like it had vision. His back end, always a problem for a tranny-cat with crystal issues, was a horrible stinking horror that I won't describe for the sake of your fair sensibilities.

It was midnight, and I had two choices -- I could take him to the emergency vet, an automatic four hundred bucks just to enter the doors, and they'd transfer him to our vet when they opened at 7:30am. Or I could let him sleep, at home, where he'd finally made it. I chose the latter, and made him a bed on the couch, where he seemed to be content to rest. But when I got up to check on him half-an-hour later, he was in the hall, as close as he could get to me without coming in the bedroom. I spent hours out there in the night, just holding his paw and trying to figure out what had happened.

We were at the vet at 7:30 this morning, and the best we can figure is one of two things: He got caught in someone's basement, someplace with water and an occasional mouse, but that wouldn't explain the pads on his feet being so worn. What I think is more likely is that someone "humanely" trapped him as a seeming stray (O Digit who broke out of a collar in two days or less, every time)  and took him far, far away and released him (a kindness, sometimes, when the only shelters around are kill-zones). And he's been wandering, trying to get home for almost four months.

He's lost half his weight, from sixteen pounds to eight. He weighs less that Miss Idaho. His rear end is a nightmare and needs surgery (partly because he hasn't been eating his expensive prescription cat food for months, and partly because flies are a bad, bad thing). His bladder is hard, as if it's full of stones, and the doctor can't hear his heart, which he and I both found strange. (It is possibly that I love him so much that I got his zombie back instead). He is severely dehydrated, and can't have surgery until he's stabilized, and I feel like such an asshole for taking him right to the vet, where he'll have to stay for days, when all he wanted was to come home. Makes me feel like I made the right decision to keep him at home last night.

But the doc thinks we might get him to a place where he can fight back, and if anyone can, my Digit can. Of course, he's gonna be PISSED when he finds out about the kittens I saved in his name. And even though this might be overkill, when he gets better (I hope I hope I hope I wish I wish I pray he gets better), he will be kept inside. And if he turns into the cat from hell, which he will, demanding to get out, he will be chipped (already in the works), and he will wear two collars at all times. I'm not kidding. The other cats will make fun, but he will wear two collars. And maybe an orange CalTrans vest.

I'm beside myself with joy. And worry. I can't lose him again, not just yet.  I had JUST gotten to the point where I could say his name without breaking down. But mostly joy.

Also, I went to Long's after the vet, and bought not one, but two fire extinguishers.


O, joy. My heart lives.

Dykes on BikesJune 25, 2007

DUDE. Know what I did on Saturday? I rode on a motorcycle. In Dykes on Bikes, in the Dyke March.


I've been trying to hitch a ride for YEARS.

It was seriously one of those dreams come true -- the dream that seems silly, and IS silly, but it's still a dream, and then it happens and it's BETTER than you thought.


My friend Geena's girlfriend was at a wedding, so I asked if I could be on the back of her motorcycle. Actually, I don't even think I asked. Geena just knew that I would desperately want to ride with her, so she told me it was going to happen. I didn't even trust it would, until that day. It seemed too good to be true.

The best part of Pride, for me, is Pink Saturday. That's the day that thousands and thousands of women meet in Dolores Park, and listen to bands, and raise money for good things, and then walk through the city streets, smiling, and dancing, or just walking. You get everyone, the girls from out of town, out of state, who have never seen a group of lesbians like this, to the mothers who bring their kids and march with them, to the older women, who might be grandmas but ain't out of the running, no way.

And that's a CRAPload of people, all in one place, and it raises Lala's Group Of People I Don't Know hackles, so it was big of her to go with me. I treated her nicely and sat her in a cafe in the far corner, so she could sing along to Thriller (and dance, too):


and we got ice cream (Mariko, it's the salted caramel with chocolate salty Fleur de Sel topping, from BiRite Creamery):


Then we met up with Geena and friends, and I got on the bike, we sat there, the engines roaring, deafeningly loud against the walls and sidewalks, and then we sat some more while hundreds of people lined the route and cheered, and then we were off and sailing through the city streets (okay, it took a while to get any speed while the cops cleared traffic ahead of us, but it FELT like we were going fast sometimes), and I had those incredible moments when you meet someone's eyes and you have a moment. But I had a lot of them, people standing on the side, smiling right into my eyes as I grinned at them, and it was the best feeling, that.*  And then we cruised around the turn at 16th and Mission, and confetti streamed down on us from a high apartment, and my eyes went up into the sky, and I realized that this was one of the best feelings EVER.

Lala and I had walked past the Women's Building earlier in the day -- the murals are incredible, and Lala's friend Moira is listed as one of the people responsible for its beauty.


We rode past it on the bike, and suddenly I knew where I was, and then we were turning around on Mission and coming back to the truck (every year we set up a dance area, and dance with the crowd as it comes marching by). (This is way more fun and less work than walking all that way. Plus if you throw Hershey kisses, you tend to GET kisses. Not that I've done that since I've been married, no. Uh-uh.)

Then we had sushi, and then we went home, and it was a completely wonderful Pink Saturday. My favorite ever. Yay.

*The most incredible time I ever had that moment of connection with someone I didn't know, Lala and I were at a march in the city. The march itself was a very large group of Pro-Life people who had come into the city on buses from all over the state. They were marching in protest against abortion. In answer, thousands of us Pro-Choicers met them, and lined their route in protest. We raised our signs, and they marched past us, with their signs, the always-charming bloody fetus kind of signs, you know the type. Lots of sinners going to hell signs. The anger low in my guts was awful, but we stood there silently, as people passed just inches from us. Then a small old lady with white hair under her baseball cap, who was marching with Them, looked at Lala and me and smiled the sweetest smile and raised her fingers in the vee for peace. Lala and I lifted our hands at the same time, and we gave her the peace sign back, and there was real compassion between the three of us, and it was one of the most powerful things I've ever witnessed.

Harry Potter Fans in the Bay Area June 22, 2007


Knitters converge!

You already know you're getting the book on the day it's released, July 20th. Of course.

But you know what's more fun than THAT? Can you IMAGINE?

Seeing my sister's band, Deadpan Alley, play their Harry Potter songs at Bookshop West Portal in San Francisco on the release day. That day, they will be known as Knockturn Alley, and I say we knitters converge in honor of Mrs. Weasley and watch the show. Leave her a comment to get on the evite list, or just show up. DETAILS HERE.

Dude. So cool.

SaltJune 21, 2007

Do you have ANY IDEA how many times I have gargled with salt water in my whole life? Maybe one million times. Maybe three billion times. Give or take a few. Blech. Strep, three or four times a year, for my whole life, plus months and months of tonsillitis. The tonsillitis is now resistant to the strong antibiotics I'm on, so they're testing to see what else they can put me on for the next 5 weeks until the surgery date. Dude, when the bird flu hits, either I'll go down in a hot second, or I'll be immune to EVERYTHING because of the build-up of antibiotics in my system. (I know, antibiotics are bad. No medical horror stories, please. I have to be on them to keep the infection at least a little at bay. Although they're not working right, huh?)

Anyway. It all comes down to salt. As usual.

I love salt. (I have very low blood pressure. No medical horror stories, PLEASE.) No, really I LOVE salt. I love the taste of it, the smell of it. Lala bought me a ten pound BAG of it from Costco the other day as a joke. Or maybe it was a serious gift of love. Or maybe it was both. Whatever, I propped it up in the kitchen. Tasty decoration. I salt food before I taste it (although if it's homemade I try not to. I take a little taste and THEN add salt. I am Polite Company).

Sometimes, and I've done this ever since I was a little kid, I'll lick the side of my hand and pour a little salt on it and lick it off. I don't really care for potato chips, but I'll eat them for the salt. I don't like pistachios but I suck the shells and throw out the nut. Even gargling with salt water, you know..... I enjoy the flavor if not the activity.

I love this in particular: I pour the teaspoon of salt in the mug, add the hot water, then stir with the metal spoon. As I stir, and the salt dissolves, the tone of the metal spoon hitting the ceramic mug goes lower in pitch. Reminds me of the siren going by, the Doppler Effect of salt.

That is all.

June 17, 2007

Well, good morning.

It's almost ten on Sunday morning, and it's gorgeous. The house is mostly tidy, the coffee is made, Lala is still sleeping. I have Clara on the floor of my yarn room washing her paws, Willie sitting next to me, and Waylon lying on my chair-arm, looking out the window. Someone is playing hip-hop, but it's good stuff, a bluesy, slow, sad sounding hip-hop, and it's good to hear coming through the morning sun. I had vegemite toast for breakfast. My throat hurts, suddenly, in a new place, which worries me, since I'm still on the antibiotics, but I'm hoping for the best and gargling with vinegar and salt water, and using echinacea/beejelly spray from Chinatown.

We're having a musician-type party tonight (if you weren't invited, I'm sorry! I forgot! If you know where I live you should come, and I mean it), and I'm studiously Not Stressing about it. I will spend an hour cleaning later, a little polish and vacuuming, making sure the dog couches are sit-able, and then I won't worry about it. In the past, I've always stressed about the state of the house, and then I realize two hours into the party that there are black tracks on the kitchen floor where everyone has been walking through spilled, melted ice, and I finally realize NO ONE cares as long as your house doesn't smell like animals. Too much, that is. Tonight it will smell like crab cakes and barbequed chicken, so again, not too worried about it.

I *do* have to do my toenails. Stat.

And because I have to go do those toes, I'll throw a few more pics at you.

You all seem to like the sepia, so here are a couple more.


From La's birthday. We were in the City, at an Irish pub.


And one more of those you like, because you all make me feel pretty:


And you know WHY sepia rules? Because it hides things like the fact that I hadn't done my hair yet (I have now):


Hi! You see that line of WHITE hair right next to Lala's white hair? In the part? Click for big if you don't believe me. I'm 34, and left natural, my hair would be mostly grey. Dude. Nuh-uh. (Also, I must be goosing Lala. That's it.)

And for all you darlings who left me the most wonderful comments about my friend Bob, a shot of him and me at my wedding. Thank you.


I'm so glad he was there. And I'm so glad YOU'RE here. (I feel like I'm channeling Mr. Rogers. I shall go change my cardigan.) But really, I am. I hope you have a lovely, sunny day, and that it's not too hot (hate the hot) and that you love someone up today.

Church of BobJune 15, 2007

More than five years ago, I quit smoking. It was hard. Really, really, really hard. My friend Bob, a recovering alcoholic with a lot of years sober, gave me his nine-year chip. That was the talisman that got me through -- whenever I HAD to have a cigarette, I clutched it like it was the lighter I used to carry. I love a sobriety chip in that you can squeeze it as hard as you can, and you can't bend it, can't break it, and then your fingers smell like quarters afterward.

I kept it on my person for a solid year, either around my neck or in my pocket. When I went to Italy by myself later that year, it really WAS the only thing that kept me from smoking. I mean, who would have known? Surrounded by smokers, in a different country, NO ONE would have known. But I would have had to go home and I wouldn't have been able to lie to Bob. Probably could have lied to anyone else, but not to him. He would have known.

Bob died on Monday as a result of complications after surgery. He leaves behind a wife and two grown kids. I have never, ever, ever known a family closer than they were. He almost lost his family to drinking, and realized at the last minute that to keep them we would have to quit. He did, and it worked. The love that poured out of that family was something incredible to witness.

He was the funniest man I've ever met. He was Robin Williams funny with better timing. He was short and round, but got skinnier as the health problems increased. I thought he was an asshole when I first met him, almost nine years ago. He talked about his boy and called him The Beast, which I thought was cruel. It took me six months to realize that he actually loved the kid more than he loved anything else, except maybe his daughter and his wife.

He was the only person I took advice from. Pretty much, if he said to do it, I did it. When I was debating taking the job I have now, the job that I love, he told me I should do it, that I was changing in my old job, becoming bitter and jaded, and that I had to get out while I still could. I packed my bags and went.

He was talky as a jaybird. He never, ever shut up, and you never wanted him to. I'd tell him something, and that would set him off on a thought, three stories, and five jokes, and I'd learn as much as going to church. He WAS church. Church of Bob.

He came to our wedding, even though he didn't go to parties with alcohol for the most part. He stayed long enough to give me his blessing and ten hugs. I think I only saw him two or three times after that, in this last very busy year. I'm trying not to kick myself too hard in the ass for that. It's hard, though.

The funeral is in two hours, and I don't want to go. I'm going to see a lot of people I don't care to see, and worse, a lot of people that I know Bob disliked, people that treated him so badly that he retired in despair from the job he loved. A year ago. At least he retired. It's a blessing, when I think about it. At least he got a year off the job with his family. And those people who forced him out will be there crying, and holding on to each other, and I'll be there wearing my chip necklace, and trying not to hate them too much. And I'll probably hug people and smile and chit-chat, and the ONLY reason I'm going is to look into Bob's wife eyes, just for a second. To smile at his daughter. To hug the cop that he adopted as son. I know Bob doesn't give a shit whether I go or not, he loved me, and I loved him, and the last time I saw him we told each other. We always told each other. But I want my presence there, my body to be standing with the hundreds and hundreds of people who will celebrate this incredible man's life today.

The church will be full, most in uniform. I'm going from work, so I'll be in uniform. And I'm dreading the bagpipes more than anything in this world.

Stole! June 11, 2007

I am a new woman today. I accidentally stayed up from 4:30am on Saturday until 8:30pm on Sunday, 40 hours or so, and by last night I was an irritating moron and didn't feel too well, either. I didn't plan it, just had to work a lot, but wouldn't let the opportunity of seeing Devil Makes Three playing WITH the Whoreshoes pass me by, so I went out Saturday night after work, knowing I had to get up at 4:30am to go back to work. I was tired! So I had coffee! Two cups! And then proceeded to stay WIDE AWAKE for the three hours I had available to sleep. Bah.

But the show was great, possibly the best show they've had, I think. And I met Lisa, who won for coming the farthest way to see the Whoreshoes -- all the way from Alaska. She lives there, and yes, PERHAPS she had other reasons for coming to San Francisco, but she made it to the show and she was great. You know how you meet a person and you're like, oh, yes, that's a nice person. And then you meet someone and you think, Yeah! Great person, so glad she's here! That was Lisa. Plus she gave me a bottle of wine, which was sweet and will not go unappreciated. And she's a nurse/midwife, which will remain one of my unfulfilled dreams, so that makes her even cooler. Thanks, Lisa. Come back soon.

Also, I wore my new stole (the pattern says it's a capelet, but it feels more like a stole in the wearing):


It used 2 skeins Lambs Pride bulky, I think I used size 13 needles to get gauge. Took about five minutes. I found the brooch in my jewelry box (I don't really have one of those -- I have a bunch of places where I keep costume jewelry, but I like to say that I do), and it worked out perfectly as closure:


And it went with my outfit for the show:


And a bonus shot, since the camera was set on sepia when I started shooting:


KnittensJune 9, 2007

***Added a bit later - How cute is Mandy's new sweater? Don't you want her to sell the pattern? I need a lacy little sweater like that, go bug her to write it up***

Good morning, kids.

I haven't been here that much lately, have I? I must admit I've been rather uninspired when it comes to the blogosphere lately. I'm reading posts, but hardly commenting. Not moved to write posts myself. Blogennui.

Is it because it's becoming summer? Is it because I've been ill and worn out? Is it because at home kittens crawl all over me when I'm on the computer? I do spend a lot more time on the internet while at work, and I don't spend that much time on it, compared to what I used to spend. (Also, grammar has gone out the window, obviously.) Lala is terrified I will go the way of all her priors gals, most of whom professed to lurve the internet, only to forget every password they ever knew as soon as soon as they knew Lala's birthday by heart. I think I won't do that. I lurve the internets. However, I think I'm resting a bit. For the first time ever, when Google Reader (LOVE MY GOOGLE YES I DO) says that I have 100+ posts to read (isn't that polite? That's the most it ever says I have, even though I know it's more like 600+ posts unread.....) I don't care. Just don't care. I have a folder called Friends, and my favorites ever are in there (that's where your blog is), and I make sure I read everything in there. All the rest, things like lifehacks and writing news and crafts posts, eh. I mark 'em as read and I DON'T CARE. Liberating, really.

Know what I do care about? Besides knitting? (You wouldn't know it, would you, but I have been knitting, and made the CUTEST shrug from this pattern, just no pics yet -- I don't even like shrugs, but this is just like a cute short sweater.) I care about knittens! Crazy chasing knittens!

    Fluffy Willie, looking like a big cat

    Miss Idaho is still unsure about all this.

    Willie Smush Sleep.

    Oh, the curled up Waylon cuteness.

Enjoy your weekend, all, and if you're out and about  tonight, Saturday, please come by the Great American Music Hall for the BEST show -- the Whoreshoes are playing with Devil Makes Three. It's gonna kick ass. Yeehaw! 

Housecleaning HackJune 6, 2007

I have this new thing I do that has me so excited. And it has to do with housecleaning, so it probably won't excite you the same way, but oh man, it's effective.

I just haven't had enough hours in the day recently, and I haven't had any TV time, or any Wii time, or any real DOWN time -- every hour off is scheduled and busy or filled with sleep. So the house has been.... well, let's just say we have hardwood floors, but it's been feeling like carpet under foot.

So I've done this thing, this very little thing, which helps me clean house FAST. I mean, in one hour, I can get most of the house presentable for company. In two hours, the mirrors are shining and the dining room table is polished. But we rarely have two hours, do we?

Here's what I do:

I get a notecard and a pen, and walk (quickly) from room to room. I physically enter each room and write down in detail what I want to accomplish in this quick cleaning run. If there are clothes next to the bed and I want them moved to the laundry area, I write that down - "bedroom, pick up clothes." And so it goes.

Water inside plants.
Water plants in front yard.
Change sheets.
Dry towels.
Put away dry dishes.
Wash dirty dishes.
Clean stove.
Clean toilet.
Mop bathroom.
Baking soda carpets.
Hang up clothes.

Then the best part -- I swear I just love this part so much it's kind of sick -- I go over my list and number the worst ones first. Number one is the chore I hate the most. On this list, I think it would be changing the sheets. Number two would be doing the dishes. Number three would be cleaning stove.

Then do them in THAT ORDER. You really only have to number the things you hate to do. I like to water, I like to put away dishes, I like to fold clothes (although I hate to hang them up), and everyone knows I LOVE LOVE LOVE to vacuum with my Dyson (one of the best things we've ever bought), so I don't number them.

But with every dreaded chore completed, the chore you hated most is already done, and only fun lies ahead. And you get to cross things off! Quickly! We all love to cross things off lists, don't we?

Next weekend, I'm going to clean out my yarn room -- that yarn in bags is, indeed, not kitten proof anymore, and I've bought some clear plastic bins. And my books are out of control. And my clothes are out of control. I think I will use my notecard method.....

What are your do-stuff-fast cleaning hacks?

You Do The WorkJune 4, 2007

Hello, y'all. Just a quick note -- I'm at the parents' house down south -- it's the little mama's birthday in a few days, and it was La's birthday on Saturday (good day, deYoung Museum and the Vivienne Westwood exhibit, the Japanese tea gardens, sushi for dinner, and she finally got her Wii (thanks to Celia's Eva, who helped me find one when I was about to lose hope)).

So I'm skipping out on you again today. But I had a quick question for you, and it'll be fun.

What's your favorite knitted item that you made yourself? And by favorite I don't mean which piece do you love the best, I mean which do you end up wearing the most, and feeling the best in? God knows I have sweaters that I think are great and NEVER EVER wear for one reason or another: they're not the right size, they shed, they're too warm, they're too short, they're just a little too long....

For me, it's my green School Products cashmere sweater with the buttons I bought in Venice. I wear it a lot, and I'm always proud of it. I'm proud that it's unique, that it's a sweater that actually looks handmade yet still kinda stylish, that it fits well, and that it's just the right size and weight for foggy days.

Here's the link for the picture of me wearing it.

Now your turn. Leave me a comment with a link of you wearing your favorite thing you've made. Please? Thanks!