Saturday, April 15, 2006

Of Frogs and Dogs and Cats and Whatever

Two trips to the frog pond in two days! Aarrgh. What a waste of time and effort. I hate this! First, i finally gave up and frogged back the entire one ball's worth of Tatania. While I loved the pattern, color, and feel of the yarn, I did not love the way the yarn knitted up. I was having a definite problem knitting ribs with this yarn. I tried knitting from the center of the ball. I tried knitting from the outside of the ball. I tried knitting my ribbing using continental knitting. (I don't knit continental. I had to find a website and teach myself how.) Still didn't work. Finally, having exhausted every way of knitting that damned yarn I could think of, I threw in the towel and frogged it. I knitted a ribbing swatch from a different type of yarn, and didn't have any problem with it, so I think the problem with the yarn I was using was the twist. Back to the drawing board. Maybe I am fated to not make this sweater. This is the second or third yarn I've tried - the first two were just to heavy, and by the time I got gauge, the resulting fabric was bulletproof.

Second, while still steaming from the aforementioned frogging, I was sitting on the couch knitting away on my somewhat neglected Trekking sock, when I feel something dangling against my wrist. Look down to see what I'm feeling, and it is part of the yarn. One of the plies of the yarn is broken and unwoven, and dangling down! Crud. So, I grab my scissors and cut the yarn at that point. No sense in even frogging it. I hope the rest of the ball is not like this. I didn't expect to see this in a quality yarn. So, I am not knitting any more tonight.

I'm going to frog my Opal Petticoat sock, too. I started this one a few weeks ago while my mom was in the hospital. I love the yarn, and I think a basic sock pattern is not worthy of this yarn. I'm going to use a picot top and a shorter sock. I can wear this sock with my uniform.

While Cal, our one-eyed cat continues to make progress - he is running around this house like a nut as I type, poor Spooky had had another unfortunate problem. He has a more-or-less permanent head tilt from a severe ear infection, and as a result, has a bit of a balance problem. When I woke up on Thursday morning, he was walking on three feet. I suspected he had probably fallen from something, or miscalculated during a jump. Off to the vets with him. He has an injured brachial plexus. It should clear up, because we caught it early. He wasn't injured when I went to bed on Wednesday night, so it was less than 24 hours. He is on a steroid to help the inflammation, and more ear med for yet another ear infection.

I had the windows open today, and the cats were all piled in various windows, enjoying the sights and smells of the outdoors. I don't let them out anymore, because we have a coyote in our neighborhood. There were birds and squirrels at the feeders all day, great entertainment for the cats (and me).

Our dog loves this warm weather. Outside today, just did laps around the yard. We haven't had too much rain lately, so our yard is not a bog, as it usually is after a rain, so I can have him outside without having to hose him off. He is six, and has not gotten the message that he's not a puppy any more. An 86-pound puppy.

Happy Easter to everyone. All of my sons will be here tomorrow, although one has to work at least part of the day. We're going to have an informal dinner here. I'm happy to have everyone in one place for the day. This doesn't happen too often any more. Girlfriends, school, jobs; more often than not only some of us are home at any given time.

Lots of work in the yard today. Dug up and replaced what seemed like a million renegade crocuses (or is that croci?) Got them all corraled in one bed. Dug up some seedlings of a lovely groundcover I planted two years ago. It seems happy, and has spread like crazy. I wish I could remember what the name is - the squirrels took the marker. It is low, and has flowers similar to my Virginia Bluebell, except they are yellow. I think this plant is from England, which makes it all the more surprising that it is thriving - we have extremely hot, humid summers. I guess it doesn't mind the humidity, but I would think that the heat would give it pause. We divided and transplanted several hostas, raked a ton of leaves out of beds, and generally cleaned up. My roses have been neglected for the better part of three years, and look it. I think I am going to have to trash most of them. I think we are going to make a trip out to the garden shops along the highway tomorrow to see what is available.


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