Saturday, December 27, 2008


Merry Post Christmas everyone.  Hope you all had wonderful days filled with love and laughter and great joy.  I brought Mom home for a Christmas Eve celebration.  She requested and I complied with a feast of broast chicken (for her and the dogs and cats), potato salad, shrimp and egg nog.  They were all quite full and happy.  I was very pleased with my favorite potato salad sandwich (like egg salad only better) and a bit of Christmas Ale.  She opened her gifts, the dogs showered her with love, snuggles and lots of kisses and we had a leisurely drive back looking at all the lovely Christmas lights.  The only downside was that she was coming down with a terrible cold that included a hacking cough.

For Christmas and the day after, I did my favorite thing:  holed up in the house with good books, lots of knitting and my fur babies.  There was snuggling and napping and long walks through the 'hood (in my pjs, of course).  In fact, if I didn't have to go to work today and tomorrow, I'd probably just stay in and continue the retreat.  

I think my preference for solitude and quiet comes from being an only child.  People who require lots of noise, company and action puzzle me, in much the same way my preference for solitude confounds them.

For those who bet -- I did not finish any of the last minute Christmas gifts.  I warned you.  But looking at the bright side, I have a head start on Christmas 2009!

There are no pictures today, but honestly, me in 3 day old pjs, bad bed hair and in desperate need of a bath just isn't a good idea.  No worries -- I'm hopping into the tub and getting ready for work in a few.  I'll be squeaky clean and fairly presentable in no time at all.

In the meantime:  Happy Saturday.  The fur babies and I send you lots of snuggles and snorts and kisses.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays!

Finally, the holidays have arrived.  While this year is incredibly low key for me, still, a couple of days for sleeping in late with the fur babies, knitting that is not on a deadline and possibly even for me (whoa!!!) and naps -- I love naps!  

Apparently, I am not the only one who loves a good nappy:

With Mom living in a nursing home this Christmas, I didn't do any decorating, baking or wrapping.  The last being a bit of a problem at this late date.  I will be shoving things in gift bags this afternoon.  I did a bit of "green" wrapping by putting some of my knitted goodies in tins that could be re-used for cookies/storage/whatever.  The dollar store is my new favorite place (thanks Sheepy for turning me on to the joy that is the dollar store).

While the pugs (and honorary pugs) softly snore, I must prepare to brave the icy roads to go earn the $$ for dog food, dog beds and yarn.  (Note the order -- I know better than to think I could possibly come before the dogs!!!!)

Anyway, hope you all have a fabulous holiday full of fun, love and utter joy.  We send you snuffles and snorts.

Monday, December 22, 2008


Baby it is cold outside!  Even the doglets rushed through their morning constitution.  Wind blowing, snow swirling, me turning a lovely shade of icy blue -- must be Monday!  

So Christmas week is here.  Yes, I am still knitting.  No, I won't be done in time.  Yes, I intend to keep knitting because I am delusional.

Yesterday at the shop was fun, although many of the regulars weren't there -- missed you!  We had lots of laughs and knitting, admiring finished projects and fondling yarn in anticipation of upcoming projects.  It was all good.

Last night I cast on Toasty -- fast knit fingerless mitts.  I am almost finished with the first one.  Hope springs eternal.  Photos may follow. . . 

Have a fabulous Monday.  Stay warm.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Sunday Morning

A cold and lightly snowy Sunday morning.  Perfect for knitting, dog snuggling and hot, yummy coffee.  Yeppers, life is good.  As you can see, the doglets are enjoying their cozy dog bed.   (Don't tell Lotus she is not a pug, she was raised by Ho and Myoki and truly thinks she is a pug.)

I am sipping my java from the famous Starbucks cabled knit mug and working on one of those several fingerless mitt gifts I think I can get done by Wednesday (shut up). 

All while being supervised by her Supreme Royal Highness Kali Ma.  

All-in-all, a perfect Sunday morning.  In a few hours, I'll be off to work in yarny paradise.  Yep, it is all good.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Yeah for Saturdays

There is ice on the ground and the holidays are right around the corner.  Being a stable, reasonable human, I decided last night that I really need to knit up 2 hats and 4 pair of fingerless mitts to give as gifts.  Factoring in working all weekend and Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, I believe in order to pull this off:

1.  The yarn must be super bulky and the needles huge.
2.  I'm going to need lots and lots of coffee.
3.  Sleep is not an option.
4.  It would be helpful if the pugs had thumbs and could knit.

Any wagers on my successfully pulling off this last minute knitting?  (Hint:  knowing me as I do, don't bet on the successful completion).  Heh.  

Oh yeah, forgot to mention that I have a holiday party tonight and a knitting get together on Monday.  Well, the knit together will help with the completion, but the holiday party -- not so much.

Yeah, I do this every year.  I also wait until November to start holiday knitting.  Why?  I don't know.  Just happens that way.  Sort of my personal holiday tradition.  Traditions are important.

Speaking of traditions:

Every year I go to the Crown Classic Dog Show at the IX Center.  In fact, that is where I met the lovely Mimi and her mom Caryl.  This year was fabulous as always.  Above is Mimi and her uncle Kaze showing their stylish side.  Both dogs competed in agility again this year and did extremely well, but their true talent is making people smile.  The minute they appeared in their festive holiday wear, a huge crowd enveloped them and every one in the crowd had a huge grin on their faces.  Now that's talent.

Well, off to fiber nirvana.  Happy knitting and have a warm and loving day.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Some Folks Just Don't Get It

This is Mimi.  She is my niece and I adore her.  She is also a very talented dog -- confirmation, rally, agility -- she does them all.  And yet, she does them in fabulous pug style (translation:  only if she feels like it). 

Those of us fortunate enough to share our lives with pugs know that pugs are special.  They often don't listen, they think kitty poop is a cookie, they consider furniture their personal chew toy and they love us and pretty much everyone they meet with every fiber of their being.  This last part being what makes them absolutely irresistible to us.  After reading the comments experienced by fellow-pug lover and blogger, The Misadventures of Pug(s) and Bugg, I have to join the troops of pug-defenders.  Pugs are not herders, guarders or sporters.  In fact, pugs are not really dogs.  They are marvelous fur-wrapped creatures who delight, infuriate and keep us grounded in what fun life can be all the time, if you are a pug.  Ho-Tei, Myoki and Woody make Dixie and gang look positively well-behaved and perfectly trained and I wouldn't have it any other way.  I say pug lovers and pug humans unite and defend our furry pals' right to be who they are -- PUGS.

To those who are appalled by the (mis)behavior of pugs:  Get Over It.   To the pug moms and dads and pug fans out there -- Brudabaker and his humans have come up with the Dog Disobedience Award.  My posse is planning some extra special pug behavior in the hopes that they will be awarded this prestigious award.

Happy Friday.  Hug your pugs and non-pug furry babies, enjoy the day.  Life is far too short to behave all the time.

Sunday, November 9, 2008


Although I work 7 days a week -- don't feel sorry for me, I do it to support my yarn and pug habit -- weekends are still eagerly awaited.  The fur babies get extra long morning cuddles with momma, he coffee is savored and enjoyed instead of gulped down in a mad rush and yes, there is often a bit of knitting to start the day.  I love weekends.  Notice there was no mention of housework (heh).  Okay, Martha Stewart I am not, although I have contemplated a major scrub down of Casa de Pug.  I'm still mulling it over in my mind.

In other news, the doglets are fat and sassy and enjoying some quality mom-time.  Ho-Tei's elbow has popped back into place and he seems to be walking better (damn those puppy mills).  I finished a shop sample mitten yesterday and if I could find my camera I would grace you with a photo.  Who knows, it might turn up yet.  So there it is.  Have a fabulous weekend.  The weather is crisp, the leaves are amazingly beautiful, the coffee is warm and delicious, and the doglets are snorting contentedly.  Life is good.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A Beautiful Day

Yes, Yes, Yes! What an amazing day we had yesterday. Historic, moving, uplifting -- I don't remember an election that was so powerful and made me so proud. This is the America I love and I am, for the first time in a long, long time, optomistic about our future. There has been so much keeping us divided, it is a breathtaking to think that we truly have the opportunity to be united! We all won in this election. People voted, people participated and people cared. Let's keep the momentum going and continue to participate, to care.

Okay, I'm off my soapbox. During the election results, I kept my sanity by knitting a plain old "vanilla" stockinette sock (magic loop, of course). I must have been a bit intense since I got all the way to the heel before the west coast polls closed. What can I say -- imagine what I would have been like if I wasn't occupied with yarn and needles!!!!

The pugs handled the evening nicely. They piled on my lap and snored. You gotta give it to them, they do know how to keep things in perspective. While I didn't get as much sleep as I wanted/needed, they were quite refreshed this morning and felt that I was a tad slow on producing their breakfast. Gotta love the puggies. They have their priorities.

Happy Wednesday all.

Friday, October 31, 2008


WOW, I've been off blog for a long time. Let's get caught up -- there has been knitting, visits by Caryl and her adorable pugs, joyous welcoming of the cooler weather and more knitting, contemplation of housecleaning -- but decided to play with the dogs instead and oh, yeah, knitting. The dogs are all fine, fat and sassy. Well, not so fat -- they are trying to lose a bit of bulge, but still sassy and happy. Ho-Tei has a bit of an elbow problem, but seems to be on the road to recovery. Everyone else is great and enjoying the cooler weather. Nothing like a grand game of chasing each other through the leaves to make a dog's heart sing.

I've been working on a reader's wrap fro my mom. It is almost finished, but I have to sew on the pockets. I hate sewing. It will be a bit before the wrap is finished, I'm afraid. Socks, mittens and scarves have also come off the needles. There are a couple of sweaters in progress but they are marinating -- stockinette hell.

Work has been busy. . .Boring, I am so boring. Probably why I haven't blogged. Well, I'll try to have an adventure or two soon to bring more entertainment to blogville. Until then, Happy Halloween!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Quick Update

Hello All. Things at Casa de Pug have been busy. Lots of knitting: monkey socks, hedera socks, toe-up crazy monkey socks, woodland shawl, oooooooooooo and we got fabulous new sock yarn in at River Colors. I am also working on a top down T and am drooling over the new Rowan book. I need more time for knitting!

The pugs have been adorable, as always. They have a new friend, Ike. He is a very handsome Dalmation that lives across the street. He comes for play dates in the fenced in backyard and the boys just adore him.

I still have to post the pics from the recent pug visit. Trust me, 7 pugs being walked by 2 folks down a Cleveland neighborhood streets stops traffic. My neighbors still haven't recovered from the sight of all those adorable pug butts wiggling down the lane.

Hope everyone is enjoying their summer. Me, I'm just waiting for Fall -- it is my favorite time of year. Have a great Monday.

Give all the fur babies a hug and kisses from us.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Today is the Day

Big happenings here at the blue cottage.  I am teaching two knitting classes today:  basic socks on magic loop and the woodland shawl.  I have several knitters in each so it should be lots of fun.  It is also grooming day at Chez Pug and while I am thrilled and excited, the fur kids are blissfully unaware of what this afternoon bring.  Poppy (the honorary pug) needs to be groomed every 6 weeks and I am blessed with a mobile groomer who adores Poppy and they have a grooming/love fest every six weeks.  It is quite cute and Poppy looks absolutely gorgeous after these sessions.  The boys are less high maintenance, but occasionally I like to treat myself and I have Nancy (the wonder groomer) do the whole damn bunch.  Today is one of those special and wonderful days.   Then after grooming our friends Caryl, Susie, Gracie, Kaze and Mimi come for a pug sleepover.  I'm going to need a week to recover from all the fun of today.  I'll try to remember to take lots of pictures.

On the knitting front, I'm working on the Woodland Shawl in JJ Knits sock yarn, color San Diego.  It is amazing, gorgeous, fabulous, yummy.  We just got JJ Knits sock yarn in at the shop and it is wonderful.  Definitely worth the wait.

I'm also working on the Spring Forward socks from the current issue of Knitty.  Shannon Okey traded me some of her fabulously gorgeous hand dyed yarn in exchange for a pair of these socks.  They are looking good and I'm pretty sure once I finish Shannon's, I'm going to have to cast on a pair for myself.  They are fun to knit and just yummy to look at.  Good combo in a knitting pattern.

Well, enough babbling.  I must go do a bit of straightening before our company arrives.  Have a great Saturday everyone and stay cool.  It is way too hot for puggies here in Cleveland.  Hugs,

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Happy Thursday

It has come to my attention, ahem, that I have neglected the photo portion of this blog. The pugs are quite annoyed that they have not had their cute little puggy mugs adorning the last few blog entries. In order to bring peace and calm to the blue cottage, I present you with the daily requirement of puggy cuteness.

This is their couch, although I am permitted to sit on it so that they may sprawl atop me and snore.  Myoki likes to perch on the couch back and gaze out the window showing the folks in the living room his amazingly adorable pug butt.  Honestly.  I'm sure you can imagine the pug snot on my windows!  Sigh.  Oh well, clear views are highly over-rated.

This hot weather has been pretty hard on the pups, particularly Woody.  We've had to schedule our walks in the early morning and late evening and keep them short.  It has not been that much fun.  Next week the gang goes to Dr. Scott for the annual checkups.  We love Dr. Scott and his staff and they are all looking forward to the doting, kissing and hugging they get from the doc and his staff.  

Hi, Everyone, Ho-Tei here.  Mommy stepped away from the puter and I decided I wanted to type.  Hehehehe.  Saturday is grooming day for us so expect some lovely photos of clean, sweet smelling puggies.  I hate grooming day, especially the nail clipping part.  I scream and scream, but it doesn't matter.  Still they get clipped.  It is wrong to torture a pug that way.  Does your mommy do that to you?  I bet she doesn't.  Our buddies Susie, Grace, Kaze and Mimi are coming for a sleep over.  7 pugs in one small cottage.  Utter Chaos and Absolute Fun.  Can't wait.  Mommy will take pictures of all the cuteness -- especially me, cuz I am sooooo cute.  She tells me that all the time.  She tells the other guys that too, but I know she is just being nice and I am the bestest  cutest pug ever.  Oh oh, here she comes, gotta go.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Wednesdays are for Doing Good

Greetings blogosphere.  It is Wednesday and I was planning on writing about my dear neighbor, Larry, who passed away on  Sunday.  A kind, generous man, who had plenty of demons, he is already deeply missed.  For Larry, take a moment and call, hug, write, visit someone you care about but haven't had the time to call, hug, write or visit.  Do it now, because they won't be there forever and they leave much sooner than any of us can imagine.

And, on the pay it forward, random acts of kindness path, pugs in need are many.  Benny, Henry and Luna of Owned by Pugs are having a raffle to help Compassionate Pug Rescue.   In these challenging economic times, it is hard to give, but as Owned by Pugs so eloquently stated, every little bit builds to a lot.  Here in Ohio, we have Ohio Pug Rescue and so I decided to give a little bit to both.  So, for the pugs, find your local pug rescue, and if you can't donate a dollar, maybe a towel, blanket, food, treats -- anything to help these sweet pugs in need and the angels who care for them.

Make this a fabulous Wednesday -- be kind, smile, make someone feel loved.

Hugs to you all.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Happy July

Just when you thought I had dropped off the face of the earth, I show up again.  What can I say, I'm just that kinda wench.  Things here in pugville have been busy.  The boys are all fat and sassy, enjoying the cooler weather.  They have all developed a taste for fresh melon.  It is really cute to watch them munch on the melon bites with these silly smiles on their little puggy faces.  Woody is particularly fond of cantaloupe.  

On the knitting front, still working on my Cookie A. monkey sock in Koigu -- it is so yummy.  I also am working on the Hedera sock pattern from Knitty and Spring Forward from the newest Knitty is in the queue.  Love love love knitting socks.  Last weekend I taught a sock class and for the first time in over a year, used double pointed needles -- yuck!  Just reinforced my addiction to magic loop.

On the school front, I am struggling with meteorology and now have new respect for the weather folks.  Who knew it was this intense.  All those little symbols and maps and such.   Yes, I do see the contradiction -- hand me a knitting pattern full of charts and symbols and I am in 7th Heaven, hand me a weather map and tell me to interpret it and I am in utter hell.  Go figure.

Hope everyone has a great Wednesday.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Wednesday Meanderings

Let's begin today's post with a picture of my backyard.  I love this tree.  This tree is the reason I bought the house.  For those of you with eagle eyes, yes, there are lots of weeds along the fence and under the tree.  No, I am not in any hurry to go out in the blistering heat to pull them.  They'll wait.  They'll grow larger.  They'll still be there.

Meet Zoe.  Yes, she is fat.  No, she doesn't seem to mind.  Zoe is really Poppy's cat.  Poppy found her when we were out walking one day and made me bring her home.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.  Anyway, Zoe thinks she is a dog, has a delightful sense of humor and let's face it, a tummy that you just want to tickle.  She likes to sprawl around like this and so I felt it was only fitting that it be the pose we used to introduce her on the blog.

Meet my spider wort.  Isn't strange and wild?  I planted one little shoot several years ago and now it is taking over the front flower bed.  Having regaled you with my distaste for gardening in a previous post, it is obvious the plant will have free reign and do as it pleases.  As long as it smothers the weeds, it is okay with me.
Notice anything missing from this post?  Yep, no knitting.  On the needles I have 3 socks, 2 sweaters, 1 wrap, 1 cardigan -- I want to cast something new on the needles.  Obviously I have a bad case of startitis.  And I still haven't played with my new spinning wheel. Meh!

Well, I've blathered on a bit about nothing.  Have a great evening all.  Perhaps tomorrow will bring some exciting blog material.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


Okay, deep cleansing breaths, I'll be fine -- squeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.  Sorry, I just can't stop.  You see on Saturday I was lucky enough to go to TNNA in Columbus -- Erika, you rock!  The yarn, the giants of fiber art, the rock stars of knitting, the yarn, the yarn, the yarn.  OMG!  3 days later and I am still giddy with the excitement of it all.  Heidi of Stitch Cleveland and I hung together and walked the show floor.  She knows everyone, I swear.   She is also uber cool and it was just more fun than humans should be allowed to have -- really!!! Hard as I tried, I was like a kid in a candy store.  Everywhere was fabulous yarn -- books -- designers -- yarn stars: Shannon Okey, Sharon of She Knits, Vivian Hoxboro, Cookie A, Nora Gaughan, the Yarn Harlot, Franklin, Lucy Neatby, Nora of Nonni, Maggi of Maggi Knits, and so many more I'm exhausted just thinking about it.  What an amazing experience.  

Knitters of the universe the Fall collection will be yummy.  Get those needles ready for some amazing knitting and crocheting -- just sayin!

On the Pug Posse front, all are well.  The heat we've been having lately is really hard on them, but we are adjusting.  Of course, I'm going to get an electric bill that will break the bank because by adjusting I mean I've cranked up the air conditioning and decided comfort beats food. 

Sunday started our sale at River Colors and it is a good one.  Five year anniversary!  Wow!!!!  The Sunday regulars were in -- I just love that group.  They come every Sunday and knit and chat and just are a total delight.  There was lots of yarn fondling and shopping and yes, I also weakened and got some Silke Tweed.  Enough for a sweater and a shawl -- I was weak, but I am not sorry.

Hope you all are having a great week.  I'm still high on TNNA fumes.  WOW!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Thursday's Random Ramblings into Friday

In all my pug gushing, it occurred to me that I failed to pay proper due to Her Royal Highness Princess Popperina Bossy Pants aka Poppy.  She is the matriarch of our posse and does her best to keep the pugs in line.  It is a tough job but she is very very good at taking care of business.  This is a rare photo since she is usually curled up in my arms which is why you rarely see her in photos.  The pugs believe she is a pug and she allows them this folly.  She is a champ.

Since blogger has deemed my photos uploadable, here is the finished Show your Colors Shawl in Claudia Handpaints John B Colorway.  I used 4 skeins and still the shawl seems a bit dainty to me.  I am not dainty -- do you see a problem?

Yes, I am doing a completely shitty job of blocking, but I don't mind.  I am, in fact, a process knitter and the finished products are not what I enjoy about the craft.  Don't get me wrong, sweaters, socks, etc. are lovely and I appreciate them, but my joy comes from the process.  By the time I'm at the blocking stage I've mentally left the project and wandered off to knit something else.  My bad ;-)  

So I started Anne Hanson's Alhambra -- Have I mentioned how much I love love love  Anne's designs.  Look at this -- yum, yum, yum.  Yes, ahem, it will requiring blocking when finished.  But let's not dwell on that just now.  Now we must frolic in the joy that is this fun and lovely pattern.  The yarn is Blue Moon Fibers Raven Series.

The flash washed out the color, trust me it is lovely. 

Well, I'm off to battle the laundry.  Have a wonderful weekend, hug your puppies and hope your knitting is to gauge.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Weed Warrior

At the last minute, I requested the remainder of this week as vacation and thus, spent portions of today battling the weeds which have taken over my "flower beds."  When I first bought the blue cottage I had fantasies of a cottage garden with flowers everywhere and singing birds and just a small plot of green, flowery loveliness.  But then life smacked me in the head with certain realities:  1.  I am not 16; 2.  my body does not like to garden; 3. my knees really hate gardening; 4. bugs bite me when I garden -- I hate being bitten by bugs; 5. there are more weeds than there is time to whack them into oblivion or even momentary submission; 6.  no matter how much yanking, clipping, digging, stomping, swearing you do, there will always be weeds you missed -- big honking 10 foot weeds that you'd have to be blind to miss, but yet, you missed.  Sigh!

The day spent hunting the wild weed was not fulfilling.  Yes, I filled a yard bag with yard waste.  Yes, I lots of little itchy bites where little nasty itchy bite creating bugs bit me -- I am really bitter about that.  Yes, I have mud on the knees of my jeans, dirt under my nails and mangled cuticles.  No, I am not happy about any of those things.

To break this incredible funk, I tossed the gardening stuf back in the garage, stomped in the house and spent some quality time with Mad Madam Mim -- my spinning wheel.  Isn't she beautiful?  I love her.  She made me very happy.  

Then I started thinking -- aren't these guys way cuter than flowers?  And they produce fiber.  Trader Joes sells cut flowers pretty cheap.  I could plop some of those cut flowers in a vase and get my flower fix and then I could fill my yard with these!

Now that is a lot of cuteness in small packages and they produce FIBER -- yes, I know I already said that, but  . . . fiber - spinning wheel - knitting -  happy Kimberton.  See, it works.  The neighbors might be confused but I'll just claim they are "designer dogs" -- hehehehe.   This little fantasy should help me get through the next few days as I attempt to clean my house.  Housework is just indoor gardening.  Yuck!

On a happier note, I finished the Show your colors shawl.  It is blocking and should be adorning my shoulders just about the time the weather decides to hit 90 with 100% humidity.  My, I'm a snark tonight -- blame it on the weeds, I am. 

I'll put a photo up tomorrow night.  Right now Blogger doesn't want to upload my photos -- bugger.  Happy Wednesday!


Monday, May 26, 2008

Yarn Madness

Well, after a glorious day at the Great Lakes Fiber Show, my stash has been enhanced, my credit cards and bank accounts are smoking from the action and I am an exhausted and happy fiber addict.  First, I bought a hitchhiker spinning wheel and met a glorious spinner (Hi, Susan) who really took me under her wing while I made the decision to make the spinning leap.  Pictures will be forthcoming.  I got to meet ANNE HANSON and CHRIS  of Briar Rose Fibers --OMG!!!  Rock stars of knitting.  Of course I made an absolute ass out of myself gushing and drooling and having them sign my yarn bag -- yep, I did!  And you know what, I would do it all over again.  What a thrill to meet such talented and wonderful folks.  I love fiber people -- they are the nicest folks EVER!

There was lots of roving (and yes, I HAD to get roving -- I have a spinning wheel).  There  were sheep and alpacas and border collies and fiber folks and it was just the best day ever.  My buddies Madeline and Joyce were with me -- total enablers, trust me.  Honestly, if I didn't have to work on Sunday, I would have gone back to the festival.  It is better that I didn't.  Who knows where I would have found the funding for day 2.  hehehehe.

On the pug front, the boys are fascinated by the spinning wheel and so, of course, I have to place it out of sniff/chew reach when not in use.  That was one of the deciding factors on the hitchhiker -- small and easily portable.  The top of the TV is a good spot -- I get to gaze lovingly at the wheel and they can't get to it.  (Says a lot about my decorating style - no?)  The weather has been perfect for pugs -- not too hot, not too cold and they have been getting lots of attention on their walks.   Yesterday a woman saw us as she and her husband were driving by.  She made him pull over so she could jump out of the car and get some pug love.  The boys now expect everyone to shower them with hugs and kisses and are deeply offended when folks walk by without paying homage.  

For those of you worried about my school work -- I did get all my homework in on time, but it severely cut into my spinning time.  Today I must do a bit of housework -- yuck -- but I plan to spend some quality time with my new wheel.  I'll keep you posted.  Happy Monday!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

My Bad

Oh my, I have fallen under the seductive spell of yarny goodness once again.  Really, I was just sitting here reading  my favorite blogs when I fell off the yarn diet wagon -- again!  Knitspot is the home of the most amazingly beautiful lace patterns ever created.  In addition, the designer, Anne Hanson, writes patterns that are clean and fun and fabulous.  So there I was, drooling over her new May patterns and the yarn she used and BAM -- I was at this site -- Woolen Rabbit -- clicking away, tossing lace weight yarn into my cart with wild abandon and CHECKING OUT!!!  Sigh!  See, I like to fantasy shop online so I go to sites and shop as if I were a bazillionaire but I don't check out.  It amuses me, fulfills the need to add to the stash, without actually adding to the stash and the crushing credit card debt.  But every once in awhile -- okay, more often than not -- I hit the checkout button.  Now, if the merchant does not use Paypal, I am able to back out since I'm pretty lazy and don't want to go find the credit card.  BUT, if Paypal is an option, wham/bam/it is a sealed deal, madam!  Of course, I then had to go back to Knitspot and purchase the May patterns since I now had all this lace yarn on the way.

Now, the really sad part of this is that classes start on Monday and I am teaching sock knitting classes over the summer in addition to my Monday-Friday job (which pays for the yarn addiction) and I'm not sure exactly when I am going to have time to knit all this lace.  But at least I have it at the ready. 

I am still working on the toe up socks using the Glacier Lake pattern.  It is a great pattern and the sock is looking good.  A truly enjoyable knit and a pattern that I can do while riding the train to and from work.  My kinda happy sock pattern.

I am also still working on the Spunky Eclectic Show Your Colors Shawl.  I am doing it in Claudia Handpaints John B colorway that I bought at River Colors, but I think I am going to end up using 4 skeins instead of 3.  No worries, I took the precaution of buying 4.  Yes, this knitter has run out of yarn before running out pattern -- I just hate when that happens.

The pugs are pacing so it is potty break time.  Won't they be surprised to find out it is raining -- they hate rain.  Best go before I have "accidents" to clean up.  Have a great Saturday and happy knitting and hope you all get lots of pug kisses.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Friday at Last

Still no pics -- too lazy to find the camera.  Sorry!  Great arrivals in the mail today -- more sock yarn from the Loopy Ewe -- I LOVE THE LOOPY!!!  A fabulous bag from  It is a fabulous bag.  Perhaps even the bag of my dreams!!!!!!  Could I be a little obsessed with the exclamation points this evening????  Why, yes, it does seem to be out of control.  My apologies.  But this bag is to die for!!!  Trust me, it rocks.  It is the Santa Bag.  I love it.  Long strap, plenty of pockets  -- it is everything I hoped for and more.  Go, buy, you'll be happy you did.

On the knitting front, still working on the toe up sock. It is looking good and will make a photo debut soon.

The pugs are busy watching the hood -- no one is allowed to walk near the blue cottage.  Dirty job but someone has to do it.

Tomorrow I'm off to the Westside Market.  Photos may be taken.  We'll see.  Happy Friday All!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Wednesday Ponderings

This week is really flying by.  I originally titled this Tuesday Ponderings, and then realized it was Wednesday -- whoa!!!!

On the nature front, the baby robins have flown the nest.  Of course they left without saying goodbye and on a cold rainy day to boot.  I think they are still close to the blue cottage since the parents are still hanging around and acting fussy.  Sure hope the babies are all safe, warm and dry.  Once the rain stops, perhaps I'll go out and take a photo of the empty nest since I blew the chance to photograph the babies.  Got to remember to take the camera on the dog walks.  If nothing else I can amuse you with pug butt photos.

Mom is still in lots of pain.  It is going to be a long recovery I'm afraid.   It is startling how much injury occurs in a simple fall when you are 72.  Guess we are just lucky she didn't break a hip.

The knitting is slowly returning to normal.  I am still working on the top up sock -- Glacial something or other -- and it is coming along nicely.  Perhaps there will be photos tomorrow. 

Well, I'm pondered out.  Happy Wednesday.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


First, something to make you smile.  On the pug front, my buddy Caryl and her 4 pugs came up from Stow and we attended the Pug Prom.  It was the best time EVER!!!!  I took Woody, who seemed to enjoy watching the youngsters rushing about.  Caryl made fabulous outfits for her posse.  Are they cute or what?????

Geez, a month since my last post.  What happened -- I forgot my password.  Yep, menopause has eaten my brain.  The ladies in the Sunday Social Knit have assured me that I will get it back some day, but I am not confident.  Sorry for the delay, yes, I have written it down in a place that I can find -- not safe, but findable by the mentally infirm.  Meh!

What have I been doing?  Knitting and ripping and knitting and ripping and. . .you get the picture.  My knitting mo jo is apparently suffering from hot flashes and memory lapses as well.  I start something and decide I don't like the yarn, the pattern, the stitch definition and out it goes.  I have started 4 socks, 3 wraps and 2 sweaters.  I currently have on my needles - one toe up sock, one shawl -- hate them both, but have decided to finish them to see if this will appease the mo jo gods and therefore release my knitting mo jo for fun and frolic in the land of fiber.

Work has been quiet yet busy.  Spring has finally hit Ohio.  The pugs and I are watching a robin's nest in the front yard.  Three babies are there and they look healthy, robust and full of spit fire.  We are enjoying watching them grow -- so fast though -- and helping the parents keep the starlings and crows away.  Ho-Tei takes this quite seriously.  He cocks his head so sweet when the robins chirp at him.  Perhaps I'll find my brain long enough to take the camera so I can get photos -- what a concept.

Mom took a bad fall over the weekend.  Broke some ribs, banged up her knee and generally knocked what little sense she had left right out of her.  I've had to be around to help her get in and out of bed, to the bathroom, etc.  Trust me, there is a reason I am not a nurse.  It will take time for her to heal, but I am hopeful that she will be more mobile soon.  

Classes start next week.  Yep, 50 year old college student, working two jobs, taking care of her mother, five dogs, 4 cats.  Who wonders why I'm single?????  Hehehehe.  No matter what, I need to get my knitting mo jo back since it is one of the few things that helps keep me centered.  Any suggestions are welcome.  I want to love my knitting again.  Sigh!

Saturday, April 12, 2008


Today was grooming day at Casa de Pugs.   Woody is modeling his lovely blue bandana.  Not only is he handsome, but he smells great now too.  He's a happy dude.  All the pups had a day of beauty and look and smell amazing.  

It was also grooming day on the Mom front too.  I giggle every time I look at my toes.

On the knitting front, the eyelet and flame chevron toe-up sock is still coming along.  I discovered (don't make me relive the awful details, please) that this is not a good pattern for riding the bus.  I also discovered that I am pretty good at unknitting.  I could have done without that lesson, but sometimes the universe needs a good laugh at my expense.  Chuckle on.
To make myself feel better, I started Cozy from Knitty in the yummy, yummy Malabrigo silky merino, only to discover yet another pattern that is not suitable for daily commute knitting.  More unknitting, more universe laughing = one grumpy knitter.
So I decided to make it a perfect 3 projects I can't work on during my daily commute.  Why you may ask?  To thumb my nose at the universe of course!  Meet the lovely Woodland Shawl started in Noro Sock Yarn.  I think I may actually like it.  While I adore Noro yarns, I was quite disappointed in the sock yarn for socks, but find it rather pleasing worked into a wrap.  Maybe Noro should relabel it as lace weight and put all the sock knitters out of their misery of trying to love the yarn that won't be socks no matter what pattern you try, no matter how many times you rip it out and start over, no matter. . . ahem, sorry, I'm just not having a good relationship with that particular yarn being socks at this particular moment.  But it is a lovely wrap.

But, while all this lace knitting is lovely and all, I still need a commute project.  Meet my new plain old stockinette stitch toe-up socks in a yarn that lost its ball band and so cannot be identified.  Too bad about the ball band, since the yarn is quite lovely, but such is life in the giant stash -- ball bands get lost, knitting goes on.

The house still hasn't been cleaned, but I'm starting to not care so much.  It is a cold and rainy day and I need to knit.  It is the only thing that will make me happy.  The dust balls and laundry will still be there tomorrow, just more of them.  I think I need to go start another project.  Perhaps a lovely cotton short sleeved top for the upcoming summer months.  Yeah, that's the ticket.  Happy Saturday and Happy Knitting.  Gotta go cast on. . . . . . . . .

Friday, April 4, 2008

Fabulous Friday

First, my new camera arrived so I can add real pics to the blog.  See my current work on the needles.   This is the silky Malabrigo I picked up at River Colors last weekend.   It decided it really wanted to be Cozy from Knitty and I thought that was a smashing idea.  I've just started, but so far it is making me very happy. Then there was another package in the mail:
SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.  My new Yarn Harlot book arrived.   Yummy yarn, a fun pattern and a Yarn Harlot book.  I was doing the happy dance by the mailbox, much to the dismay of the many folks driving by  -- they will get over it.   But then I looked at the mailbox again.  Could it be?  OMG -- the Spring Knitters is here!  Another Happy Dance by the mailbox which drove the pugs crazy.  They were barking and doing their own little happy dance in the house.  You just know it is going to be a great weekend when you get to have a double happy dance at the mailbox.  So I came in, tore open all my goodies,  and did another happy dance just for the hell of it.  I also took a picture of my Crazy Monkey Toe-Up Socks that are currently on the needles.  I'm not sure what the yarn is I'm using since somewhere in my massive stash I lost the ball band.  I like the sock, but next time I'll do it in a plain sock yarn so you can see the pattern better.
And now I must go read and knit.  But I'll leave you with a photo of Ho-Tei and Myoki wrestling on the sofa.  Hope you all have as great a Friday as I'm having.  

Thursday, April 3, 2008

It's been too long

Wow, I've been a bad blogger!  Can't believe the last entry was March 23rd.  Got some knitting done and have another sock in progress.  This one is the Eyelet and Flame Chevron Socks pattern and it is just a joy to knit.  See.  I am using Misti Alpaca sock yarn that just came in at River Colors Studio and it is so soft I can't wait to wear these socks.  I used the Turkish Cast-on which I am totally in love with right now.

You know, I love Ravelry, but find I am more of a lurker than a participant.  Something about having to have pictures and ball band info makes me tired and lazy.  Probably for the best.  My stash might crash their servers, (ahem).  For the observant among you, yes, I have once again fallen off the yarn diet and dented my credit card.
In addition to the Misti Alpaca, while at River Colors I picked up some Silky Malabrigo in Turquoise and some lace weight Malabrigo.  Some women collect shoes, I collect yarn and pugs, both of which are more comfortable than most shoes and will definitely last a lot longer (I'm really rough on shoes). 

In the pugosphere, I have fallen in love with the artwork and items on Pugnotes.  Melissa and Emmitt not only have beautiful items but also a fun and fabulous blog.  Go check them out and say Hi and add to your dog art collection.  They are the best!

Winter is finally receding and the robins and crocuses are giving me hope that I can wash the salt off my car for the last time this winter.  Just to keep everyone's spirits up, here is a picture of my friend's garden from last summer.  The dahlias just blow me away!

And with that hint of spring, I'll close for now.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Slow Sundays

Woody is giving you a great example of how he believes Sundays should be spent.  He is also showing off his new Spring shirt that highlights his broad manly chest and his slim hips.  Hard to believe that handsome man is going to be 12 next month.  Since it is Easter Sunday, the yarn shop was closed and I got to spend the day with the fur babies, the knitting, the coffee I so dearly love and the bazillion dust bunnies that have taken over my house.  
Now one would think, hey, day off, perfect for dusting, vacuuming, laundry, floor mopping.  As if!  Come on!  It is a free day, the sun is shining, it is cold but not brutal -- this is a day that has knitting written all over it.  Just ask the pugs.  When I awoke at 5 a.m. this morning (because apparently I am insane), they just kept snoring.  It is really sad when you have to wake dogs up to go for a potty break.  They reluctantly joined me for 
a jaunt outside, but felt no desire to meander through the darkened streets.  Nope, do the business and get back to bed -- that was their motto.  I figured I would start on the house (again, apparently I am insane) and skipped down the basement stairs (again, as if) to toss some laundry in while the coffee brewed.  All was fine until I sat down to sip that cuppa joe and then the knitting woke up and wiggled its yarny goodness at me, purring, that it so wanted to be a finished sock.  I have no willpower against yarny goodness -- none.  You will note that next to the reclining pug is a giant pug cup of coffee, a remote control and sock in progress.  So we can all figure out that I sat with the pugs and drank coffee and knitted that cashmere/merino blend into a sock of such softness, such allure, such yumminess.  Sigh!  The dust bunnies are still here, although I did get a couple loads of laundry done and it is garbage night so I'll drag that out to the curb soon -- as soon as I finish a couple more rows.  
Naturally, I did not sit all day and knit, I took the fur babies out for 2 walks around the block to sniff the snow and leave lots of pee-mail for their buds in the hood.  The boyz even had a peeing contest:  Ho-Tei pees on a spot, then Myoki pees on the same spot, then Woody pees in the same spot, then Ho-Tei pees on the same spot. . . .this will continue until I drag them away.  The funny thing is they wait while each one takes a turn.  Then when I walk the girls aka the honorary pugs, they sniff the spot and look at me like "man, those boyz are nasty, Mom."   Great, a day spent drinking coffee and knitting results in a post consisting of dog pee -- yeah, I do live on the edge.
I will leave you with this parting shot of almost the entire dog family -- Woody left as I was snapping the photo.  He, obviously, prefers not to share the spotlight.  Hope everyone had a great weekend.  Snuffles and snorts to you all.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

I like snow, but. . . .

Woke up to another 8 inches of the white stuff this morning.  While I do like snow and winter (the better for knitting and wearing sweaters), when Spring arrives on the calendar, it would seem that Mother Nature would get the hint.   Apparently not.  The pugs were appalled at the reappearance of the cold, white stuff and refused to go outside.  Since this was the morning potty break, I got to stand ankle deep in the stuff and explain to the 3 little buggers that momma didn't want to clean up pee and poop this morning in the house.  I gave my best argument for the artistic excitement of creating yellow snow.  Can snow cause deafness in pug?  I think I can prove it does.

On the needles is the Montego Bay scarf (Interweave, Spring 2007) in a yummy cotton Noro (Sakora?) yarn that is green and pink and amazing.  The scarf is for the shop.  I've already made one in Hand Maiden Camel Spun and folks just go wild for it.  Go figure -- it is an easy pattern and a fairly quick knit.  The clapotis for the shop is still on my needles.  I'm doing that one in HandMaiden Sea Silk and it is gorgeous, if I may say so myself.  I should be knitting baby things for our clerk's baby that is due April 25, but I'd rather do socks and lace.  

My plain jane sock out of the amazing Sock Pixie cashmerino is still on the needles, which is a damn shame.  That is going to be one amazingly soft and beautiful pair of socks if I can ever get my ass in gear to finish.  In my defense, I have not been riding the rails to work this week, which severely cuts into my knitting time.

On pug news, Woody, the oldster, has decided that it is only possible for him to sleep if he is resting his chin on my face.  Yes, my face.  It is sooo sweet and yet also a tad uncomfortable, since in the best pug fashion, he does not allow me to move once he is comfortable.  So there I am trapped with his chin on my face while he loudly snores, usually in my ear.  Still, it is cute.  Ho-Tei and Myoki prefer to be under the covers in this cold weather, but of course, under the covers and on top of the momma.  No wonder my bones creak when I get up.  I end up sleeping in the oddest positions so as not to disturb the fur babies.   And, no, I would not dream of disturbing them.  Let's face it, I exist solely for their pleasure and to knit, the rest is just life's annoyances.

Happy Saturday.  Hope your knitting is to gauge, your coffee is hot and strong and you are surrounded by fabulous yarn and furry love babies.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Yes, I have a yarn problem. . . .

The fact that I have a part-time job working in my local yarn shop usually brings fits of giggles from those who know of my yarn addiction/knitting obsession.  While muggles may find this a perfect fit -- I like to knit, therefore I can sell yarn, the problem lies in the yarn fumes.  Within minutes of my arrival at work, I am completely and absolutely high on the yarn fumes and begin lusting for yarns -- Noro and Koigu come to mind.  So, there I was, putting away some Encore (nice yarn, but I am able to maintain my willpower in its presence) when over on the table some Noro wiggled its yarny self at me and hollered "hello knitter."  Oh my.  I tried, I really tried to be strong, to avoid its siren song and lovely hand, but to no avail.  Allow me to introduce you to my new friend, Noro Kochoran #44.  Yes, ahem, the entire bag.  The picture does not do it justice.  It is soooooo lovely and soft and I'm enchanted by its very being.   It might want to be a sweater or perhaps a lovely wrap.  Right now it is just going to sit on my desk and flirt with me.    Don't look at me that way -- you know you have yarn pets too. 
In more knitting news, currently on my needles is the Knitting Pure and Simple pullover.  It is obvious that I need brainless knitting these days.  Perhaps when the snow melts and the sun once again graces my life I will feel up to lace and charts and cables, but until then I am sticking with circular knitting.  It makes me happy and I am all about being happy. 

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Thursdays are bad for yarn diets

Although I fancy myself a non-joiner, apparently I am a closet sheep.  Doing my best to work from my stash, I've been diving in with wild abandon, stumbling across yarns I didn't realize I own (those late night internet yarn ordering blackouts) and realizing that I probably never need to buy yarn again and still can't work my way through my stash.   Apparently, this is a current trend with the knitting crowd -- who knew????  Anyway, for rational folks, this vast stash would be enough incentive to stop cruising the internet yarn pushers aka shops, but I never was rational.  Still, I was doing fine, until I got an email from the Loopy Ewe and completely lost all will power.  Le Sigh!  The only salvation -- sock yarn doesn't count -- hehehehehe!  AND this being my 5th order, I am now a Loopy Groupie -- does it get any better than that?  Of course  not!!!!  I would hang my head in shame, but only until my order gets here and I can roll about in all its yarny goodness.  

On my needles -- Knitting Pure and Simple Top Down Sweater in Lorna's Laces Worsted - Watercolors colorway.  Yum Yum.  The green cardigan  has been sent back to the marination pile since it still is not pleasing me enough to finish.  I also have my basic sock on magic loop in a sweet sheep yarn whose name escapes me and whose ball band has disappeared.  

With that, I close.  Happy Thursday all.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

UFOs and Pug Commentary

See this beautiful sweater? I have been working on this easy to knit, simple sweater for months. It is still not finished. Why? I don't know -- too many other yarns and projects teasing me away to play in their yarny goodness. I do believe I want to finish this sweater. I'm just not sure it will be soon. I have fallen under the spell of Sock Pixie's cashmere/merino blend sock yarn and must, must, must knit it into something. I'm thinking the lettuce leaf pattern from Madelinetosh's blog site -- it is a lovely lace scarf. But therein lies the problem -- I hate knitting scarves.
B O R I N G!!
I'm working from home today, having to take Mom to the doc to see if we can relieve some of her discomfort. Congestive heart failure is not so much fun. The pug posse is quite pleased to have me on site and I am very adept at typing while smothered by pugs.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Monday Holidays are for Knitting

There is nothing like a Monday holiday -- you get to walk the dogs in your pjs, knit all day and watch all the Netflix movies that have been gathering on top of the TV.  Yeah, sure, I could/should do housework, but face it, housework is for people who don't knit.  I took a vote (democracy is alive and well, at least in our little corner of the universe) and the pugs voted unanimously for a day spent on the couch with me knitting and them sprawled all over me snoring.   Hey, majority rules baby.  

On the knitting front, socks out of a lovely Lucy Neatby yarn that is wild and crazy and my feet are just dancing to wear.  I finished the chunky neckdown sweater -- I hate it.  Yes, "fluffy" women should never try to wear garment made out of bulky yarn, but I fell victim to the allure of the weekend knitting and the "you get to wear the sweater on Monday" siren song.  I used Rowan Fusion and while the yarn is beautiful, the pilling is pissing me off.  Fortunately, I didn't pay full price for the yarn or I would be pitching a hissy of epic proportions.  (Note, the pugs find this behavior amusing, but it does cut into their napping so they prefer I keep it short and sweet.)

I am also working on yet another Clapotis.  This one in Hand Maiden's Sea Silk.  Hand Maiden and Fleece Artist are either Yarn Goddesses or Demons From the Bowels of Hell sent to tempt me with their yarny goodness.  Either way, I am their slave forever.  

The snoring of the pugs is calling me back to my spot on the couch.  Remote, knitting and cuppa joe all within reach.  I gotta go, slugdom awaits.