Thursday, February 26, 2009

Jailhouse Dogs, Part II

Far be it from be to encourage poor behavior in my dogs (Hahaha...sorry, I can't keep a straight face at that thought) but you have to give the people what they want, right? In the comments to the last week's Dogs on Thursday post, Pooch of Yarn-Knit-Read-Lit , Sue of The Portuguese Water Blog and PonyKnit all requested images of Cooper in the dishwasher. What was I to do, other than grab my camera, open the dishwasher, and snap away? The squeeeeek of the dishwasher door is like a call to arms. Cooper came running, with Tara followed closely at his heels. Emma came too, but she refused to be caught on camera.

Phase 1: Cooper makes his initial assessment of the offerings. Naturally, he has to have his front feet on the door so that he can do a proper survey. Tara politely waits, and licks her lips. Phase 2: All four of Cooper's feet are now on the dishwasher door, while he attacks the plates and various other goodies items in the lower rack. Tara gently licks the bowls in the upper rack.

Phase 3: Cooper is in frenzy mode, afraid that his human jailers will come along any minute and spoil his fun. He wedges his upper body into the space between the racks so he can reach the items at the very back of the dishwasher. Tara politely works on the utensils in the silverware basket.

This results in Phase 4, when Cooper gets his head stuck between a large item in the bottom rack (like a colander) and the top rack, so that when he is eventually pulled out, he brings the top rack with him. Tara likes this part, as she is then able to reach more bowls in the top rack. I was unable to capture Phase 4 on film, as it also involves the dishwasher door making ominous groaning noises and me pulling on Cooper from behind, saying "Cooper, No! Cooper, No!"

So there you have it, Cooper misbehaving. Be assured that everyone got treats after this incident!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

5th Photo Meme

The Knitting Wildflower (who is knitting a beautiful Tree of Life afghan) tagged me for this meme. Here’s how it works: Find your 5th photo file folder, then the 5th photo in that file folder. Then pass the meme to 5 people.

OK, my 5th file folder is "Misc. 2008", and this is the 5th photo.
This little goosie-goose had been hanging around the museum last spring, and I grabbed my camera to get a picture of him outside of the milk glass window. I liked the chicken in the foreground and the azaleas in the background.

If anyone else wants to play along, consider yourself tagged!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

February is for Finishing (continued)

Chalk up one more project for "February is for Finishing"! This morning, I finished Emma's Brown Bag Sock Club selection for the month of February. Yup, started and finished a pair of socks in the same month! WooHoo!

This is my second pair of socks in the Charade pattern. I love this pattern! Look at this close-up:

It has a little bit of a pattern, but not so much that you can't use self-striping yarn. Perfect!

The links to the pattern are in this post-- I don't have time to do all the linky-dinky things right now as I have to go to work today, and I'm running a bit behind. My friend Pat and I are doing a hands-on craft for kids today - magnetic quilted picture frames. What have we gotten ourselves in for? It seemed like a good idea at the time...
Enjoy your Sunday!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Jailhouse Dogs on Thursday

This week's Dogs on Thursday post is brought to you by the good people at Carlson Pet Products. They are the geniuses who manufacture this wonderful invention:

An extra tall pet gate! Sweet! Fifteen minutes or so to set up, level and install that baby, and I can now fix meals, mix up dog food, and load the dishwasher without the annoyance, err, assistance of Cooper. It's one thing when Tara helps with the dishes, gently and politely doing her pre-rinse cycle. Not Cooper. He flings himself at the open dishwasher, jumps on the door, and tries to fit his whole body inside the the thing. Sometimes he succeeds. No more! I can also fix meals without having to balance every ingredient in my hands or guard the counters for fear that Mr. Cooper McStretchy Legs will reach up and help himself. I feel so liberated!

Cooper, however, is not such a happy camper.

Cooper says, "Can someone bake me a cake with a file in it?"

Sunday, February 15, 2009

More Bessie, and finally some knitting!

First, the boring stuff - knitting. This is the Hearts and Stars Blanket from the book "Adorable Knits for Tots" by Zoe Mellor. (Ravelry link) It was an easy knit, but you have to keep referring to the chart for almost every row, so not a "mindless" knit. It's for a woman at work who is having her first baby--due next month.

A detail shot:

And a pair of socks. This was the first time I used this pattern, and I think I'm in love! The pattern is Charade by Sandra Park of the "I May Be Knitting A Ranch House" blog. (Another Ravelry link...if you're not already on Ravelry, what's keeping you?)
It's just a two row repeat, so it definitely qualifies as a mindless knit. For this pair, I went by the instructions as written, but I'll made a few modifications next time. When will that be? I already have two more socks in this pattern on the needles! Love this pattern---really, really love it!

Now, for everyone who hung in there through talk of baby blankets and socks, Here are some pictures of Mom and Dad's new kitty, Miss Bessie. It's been a long time since there has been a kitten in the family, and you forget how adorable they are, and how much energy they have!

Case in point - do you see that barrier in this picture?
Dad made that so that Bessie would be confined to the kitchen until she learned how to use the litter pan. Yes, I know that cats automatically just know where they should do their business, but try telling Dad... He wanted to make extra certain that she would know where she was supposed to attend to any and all bodily functions, so he even put her name on the litter box.Gotta love him, right? Anyway, Dad made a very nice barrier to span the extra-long doorway, and even put a nifty handle on it to make it easier to move around. It's, I don't know, a foot tall? Maybe 18 inches? I tried to gently suggest that perhaps an energetic kitten might not be confined by this barrier. I might have gone so far as to say "there ain't no freakin' way" and rolled on the floor laughing. Sure enough, the next day Bessie was over that thing like it wasn't even there.Bessie says "Daddy, next time try to make something a little more challenging for me to climb."

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Cuteness Alert

Originally uploaded by Brit Knitter
Announcing the arrival of Miss Bessie! Mom and Dad picked up their new little one, and she is a charmer for sure!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Pleading the Fifth

For this week's Dogs on Thursday post, I have one question. Whooo Diidd Thiiiisssss???????

I give you Exhibit A:

The object in question is one sock, containing the perfect shade of brown to go with a pair of pants owned by the wearer of the sock. Some may look on this item as merely a garment to cover the foot, but closer inspection reveals that this is a hand-knit sock in a very pleasing combination of colors. It was knit on size 0 (2mm) double pointed needles, 80 stitches to a round, and the heel is formed using Balbriggan Heel shaping technique as seen in the "St. Peter Port Stripes" (Ravelry link) pattern from Nancy Bush's excellent volume entitled "Folk Socks".

A witness states that Exhibit A was whole and in good condition when it was placed in the clothes hamper at precisely 6:35 am on Wednesday, February 11, 2009. This same witness next saw this item as she was preparing to leave her domicile (a.k.a. Britknitterville) to go to her place of employment at 7:45 am on the same day. At that time, Exhibit A was no longer in the hamper, but was found on top of a doggie bed known to be frequented by Miss Tara Britknitter, a member of the Britknitterville household.

It is with great regret that we report that Exhibit A was found with a large hole in the heel, rendering it unusable for its intended purpose as a foot covering. Our CSI team reports that the hole was made by the gnashing of teeth. The presence of a multitude of doggie saliva further corroborates this theory. We do not wish to be indelicate, but the team suggests that the missing fabric will likely...umm..."make an appearance" in the backyard within 24 hours, if you know what we mean.

The three doggie residents of Britknitterville were immediately taken into custody for questioning. Miss Emma Britknitter (a.k.a. Emmy McMemmy, Mimi, Lickey-Face-Girl) and Mr. Cooper Britknitter (a.k.a. Cooper No, Cooper Get Down, Cooper Drop It) both state that they never saw Exhibit A, they have no knowledge of Exhibit A, and "What's an Exhibit A"?

However, when questioning Ms. Tara Britknitter (a.k.a. Tattoo, Tatty McTatters, Rat-a-tat-tat) she merely invoked the fifth amendment by stating, "On advice of my counsel, I respectfully decline to answer your questions based on the protections afforded me under the U.S. Constitution".
Until such a time as the culprit of this heinous act has been found and brought to justice, there will be no more watching the Peanut Corporation of America hearings on MSNBC.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


I'm sneaking in a quickie post this morning. I have to get to work extra early today, but I wanted to share a couple of awards from Not-so Cynical Knitting Gal. Take a look...

Creative, me? Maybe if it is spelled with a "k" I could manage it, but otherwise...

And here is a very special award. I'm truly honored to receive this year's Gracie's Golden Blogger Award! Just look at that face! I love this sweet Golden Retriever. She has a blog of her very own, about her struggle with Irritable Bowel Disease. She is so adorable - just like a big golden teddy bear. I wish New Jersey was closer to Chicago so I could visit Not-so Cynical Knitting Gal and her lovely critter family and give Gracie big hugs and kisses and belly-rubs. Thank you Gracie - I'm truly honored that you think this Brittany blog is "Golden-worthy"!

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Best Mom in the World... celebrating her birthday today! Happy Birthday Mom!

Look at this picture from 1941. Wasn't she a cutie?

And here's a picture of mom in 1955. She is a new bride here, just 20 years old, knitting socks for her husband. See...sock knitting is in my genes!

Seriously, I have been blessed with the best mother - ask anyone who knows her. She is the kindest person I know, and if there is anything good in me, it came from her. I would say that she is a role model for me on how to be a mother, but I think she would be highly insulted, since my own "kids" are really dogs, and poorly behaved dogs, at that!

I love you, mom, more than words can say!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Snowy Dogs on Thursday

Yesterday morning, I woke up and Britknitterville was covered in the dreaded white stuff. Blech. I'm absolutely positive that I am meant to live somewhere where the only snow you see is when the TV screen goes kerfluey! Oh, and the weather guys said it was just supposed to be a nuisance - it wouldn't amount to anything at all. Does this look like "nothing"?

How about this?

That's one of the garden chairs by the garage. I didn't have a ruler handy, so do you see that blue thing sticking out of the snow? Anyone recognize it?

Yup - my needle sizer/gauge calculator thingy. More than 6 inches of snow - definitely more than a "nuisance"!

The good part of it is that at work on Monday I had emailed a bunch of files to myself so that I could work on them at home on Tuesday because they were talking about icky weather on Tuesday. Did we get it? Nope. How about on Wednesday when they said it would be fine...was it? Nope. I think my left pinkie toe could do a better job of forecasting the weather! They all sound so positive when they're making their predictions, too. I wish, just once, one of the meteorologists would say "You know, we just don't have a clue what is going to happen tomorrow. Could be rain, could be snow, could be a freakin' tornado for all we know. It's all a crap shoot, so good luck out there. "

OK, my rant is over, and I feel much better now. I know anyone stopping by here on Thursdays is looking for dog pictures, so here you go. I must have taken about 20 pictures of the dogs playing in the snow, and this is the only one that came out.

That's Emma doing one of her many circuits of the yard. Silly girl! After much running and playing, they were all tired enough that, miracle of miracles, I was able to get all three of them in a picture without resorting to bribery (a.k.a. multitudes of treats).

Such sweeties! Maybe snow isn't all bad after all.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Getting Ready for Baby

Not me! No sir-eee, no! It just so happens that mom and dad are getting ready to welcome a new addition. Here's a hint:

That is a freakin' huge cat-scratch-jungle-gym-thing-a-ma-bob. It's seriously enormous! You might ask where one could purchase such a fine piece of cat furniture, but this one was hand made, with love, by the new daddy-to-be. Here's a picture of dad playing with one of the toys, err, testing the structural integrity of the supports. Yea, that's the ticket. He was testing it. Not playing. Nope. Not him.
The new kitty won't be 9 weeks old until next Thursday, so there is still a little over a week until the big day. In the meantime, mom hung this picture on their refrigerator.

In case you can't read the writing, it says "Miss Bessie 6 weeks old". She is a Bengal Snow cat. or maybe it's Snow Bengal. I'm not sure. I just know that she has already brought joy to my mom who has been missing her sweet Sara very much.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

February is for Finishing

Once again this year, I have decided to make February a month for finishing projects. Anybody want to join me? Place your left hand on any knitting book that you have nearby, raise your right hand and repeat after me. "I hereby swear ... that I will not cast on any new projects ... in the month of February... so help me dog.*"

* here you may substitute cat, or horse, or hamster, whatever you would like.

The projects I will be finishing are:

1) "Hearts and Stars Blanket" from the book Adorable Knits for Tots by Zoe Mellor

2) This market bag. A dear friend gave me the pattern, yarn and even the needles for Christmas!

3) Brown Bag Socks for January
4) Brown Bag Socks for February
5) Socks made from my mindless go-to pattern
6) More socks made from my mindless go-to pattern

7) Even more socks made from my mindless go-to pattern

And in the unlikely event that I finish a baby blanket, market bag and five pair of socks before March 1, there is always...

8) The Beast!

Wishful thinking, huh?