Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Two things...

I’ve been listening alternately to I, Claudius by Robert Graves and Fire Burning by Sean Kingston. The podcast Gives Good Knits recommended I, Claudius and she’s never disappointed me wrong on a book before, so I downloaded it and truly enjoyed listening to the stories of intrigue among the Julio-Claudian dynasty the ruled the Roman Empire from Julius Caesar to Claudius. The Fire has been burning in my car and at my desk. I know his lyrics are trite but something about his rhythms get me every time. The Boyfriend objects to his frequent use of the word shorty.

Secondly, I’ve been able to do some knitting, hallelujah!!! The 4 hour car trip to central Maine in a convertible with no AC on a day when it was 90 degrees did allow for some knitting. Due to the wind gusts I had to adjust my grasp on the yarn to prevent it from jumping all over but things worked out. I have been 95% successful knitting every day. These are my Coach McGuirk Monkey Socks knit with the yarn I dyed a couple months back. This yarn is nice to knit with although I wish I’d used a shampoo to help rinse out the dye because there is a weird texture to the yarn and I’m pretty sure it’s something chemical that I can rinse once the socks are finished. Note to self for future endeavors.

OK now to see KnK and hear their ‘exciting news’. I wonder what it could be?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Yay Energy!!

I'm happy to report that I've had two consecutive days with surplus energy. It's just like The Communicator said, after two weeks your body adjusts to a new schedule. (Ok it was more like 3 weeks for me, but still.) I'm just happy that I can get through the evening without feeling completely exhausted. Yay!!!

I've done a bit of knitting today. Currently I have all multi-colored socks on the needles, I have other things too but in terms of socks, they're all multi. I'm really leaning toward solid socks in more muted colors. I've had to do a lot of alternating skeins to prevent pooling which is also pushing me away from multi colored socks. Here is the Fibranatura Yummy yarn I just got. It's a great green; I might have to cast on sooner than anticipated.

Tomorrow I hope to take some updated WIP pics. We'll see if I can break away at lunch and find a sunny spot for a photo shoot.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Devon Heaven

The reviews are in… 2009 Devon Heaven was a blast! There were about 30 Devons and people who are owned by Devons.

Mum and I had an uneventful ride down. Although Garmin said 8-9 hours it took us 11 once the bridge traffic and rest stops were factored in.

Mum was a trooper and drove exactly half of the time so I got to knit for a while with Mr. Adan on my lap. He’s such a laid back cat in comparison to Miss Isitt who is a bit spoiled to say the least. She demanded she be held, she despised Adan, and she was only quiet if she could sleep on my lap. By the end of the ride, I was ready to shoot her. She kept me up a good part of the night and growled at Adan every time he tried to lay down near us. But by morning Adan was curled up with us and Isitt decided that she loved him.

Friday was pretty low key. I was able to visit the Black Sheep Yarn Shop in Timonium Maryland. I got a skein of Yummy 100% super wash sock yarn in this lovely celery-avocado color. That evening we left the kids in the room while Mum and I went to the Rex-ception. A good time was had by all.

The next morning we were off to the show hall. We weren’t there an hour before one of our friends offered us Twilight Zone…a 7 month stunning little Chocolate Tabby female who’s sister is dominating the Devon Rex world (one of the top scoring kittens). Shocked we tried to focus on showing our babies and considering this generous offer. There were 15 kittens competing in Isitt and Adan’s age group. 8 Judges saw them, each rating the kittens color, adherence to the breed standard, and personality. Then they ranked their top 5. Adan was our pride and joy, showing off in the show ring, hanging like a monkey, knocking everything over, and just being adorable. He was the 5th best Devon Rex kitten!!! We honestly didn’t expect him to do so well and were thrilled. Isitt, my spoiled baby, who I’m completely blinded by because I love her so much, was 11th best kitten overall. I’m a little sad but at the same time, I know she isn’t wild about showing and I think she’s perfect just the same.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how funny the auction was. The Devon Rex Rescue League was able to raise almost $5K from the proceeds. There was a lot of original artwork and pottery. We laughed so hard joking about tiny pots, coveting bells, coming for a visit, and at just about anything that came out of Angela’s mouth. That night we all slept well, being exhausted from the show and evenings activities.

We decided that we’d be happy to take the little Chocolate Tabby home with us, and by we, I mean Mum not I. Between Linus, Isitt, and MacOban our house is full. So we renamed her Emma and watched her win 4th best Devon Rex kitten with the same pride we had for our two. After many more happy moments around 5pm Sunday, Mum and I packed it up and headed north. Thunder showers and the G.W. Bridge stood in our way but in the end we made it to Connecticut by midnight. Even with me screaming at one point, “I can’t see!!!!” to which Mum responded, “Then stop the car!!!” as we were flying down an off ramp. I was really tired and had rubbed my eyes too vigorously.

We slept-in while waiting for the commuters to get off the roads. But our ride home was not without excitement. At one point, in heavy traffic, Mum offered to take the ice-cold full water bottle I was holding so I could drive with both hands. I said yes please somewhat forcefully and may have scared her, because she reached over without looking and mistakenly (at least I hope it was a mistake) hit the water bottle sending cold water flying all over my face, hair, glasses, clothing, car ceiling, windshield, and her own lap. After two breaths we both burst out laughing and began to towel off. Ohh and I did drive all the way back, now if only you could reach to pat me on the back for such a epic undertaking. I can’t wait to do it all again!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Even after driving for 10 hours

Even after driving for 10 hours I was able to knit. Actually I did quite a bit of knitting in the car with Adan curled up on my lap. Isitt was a brat the entire time but Adan was a dear little angel. This afternoon we help setup the show hall and oh did I mention that there is a yarn shop less than 2 minutes from our hotel? Yeah I’ll be visiting there at some point this weekend.

The Boyfriend did choose his three favorite pictures from Glacier which I thought you might enjoy.

My favorite!!!! There might be something to this nature walking stuff. Although I'm not sure I could knit and walk but the views are amazing!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Just a super quick lunchtime post

The Boyfriend made it home safely from Glacier National Park. He had a great time and took amazing pictures that he’ll be posting on Facebook if you want to check them out.

I’m rushing off at 6am tomorrow with Isitt, Mum, and Adan (one of Nessa’s babies) to Maryland. It’s time for the Devon Heaven show, which means that rather than a handful of Devons at a cat show, they’ll be 30-50 of them. We’re not expecting to move mountains with the two kittens we’re showing. Just bringing them for the experience and will be happy if we finish in the top half of the class. Garmin says it’s an 8 hour trip so I’m hoping to split the driving time and get some knitting in. It’s strange how fried brain = no knitting. I have made progress on my monkey socks but it’s definitely slow. I can just forget about a pair a week and hope for a pair a month now!!

Hope all is well in your part of the world.

Oh and my Just an Hour update...
I Knit on
Saturday…while watching the first half of the Tourchwood movie, most excellent, although I did miss Owen.
Sunday…while doing laundry and watching The Closer
Monday…while waiting for The Boyfriend and listening to the Stuff You Should Know Podcast (Josh and Chuck are hilarious).
Tuesday…as we looked through the trip photos but I was so tired I could only do about two rows before going to bed super early.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Devon Rex Hijinks and History

Below is an email from my mother and a portion of an interview that should be recorded in the Devon Rex history books....

"You would have died laughing last night. I was finally able to make plans to talk to G about her beginnings. Try as I may I could not get her to send me an email with it all written out. So The Samurai and I secretly prepared for the phone call before I dialed G. The Samurai was at the computer with the phone head set on with the volume muted and her hands on the key board ready to go. I was at the table with pen in hand ready to take notes on anything she missed.

I called G and she began to tell me the story. The Samurai typed her fingers flying across the keyboard, I with my pen and paper writing as fast as I could. We thought if we both took notes we would not miss anything! During the call we could NOT look at each other for fear of laughing and giving the secret away. This went on for almost an hour with our dear dear G not having ANY idea at all that there anyone else was listening in on our conversation. I did feel a little guilty for the dishonesty for a minute but then thought about how happy she will be with the surprise recognition!"

“Is it true that you were forced to breed Devons in order to buy your first one?”
"Yes, one breeder insisted on making us breeders against our will rather than selling us a pet.
In 1982 the last of our Burma black Siamese died. We always had 3 or 4 of them. My husband didn’t want anymore after our last one died as he’d always be comparing new to old.
I went to a show on Sat. to look at Cornish and Abbeys which is what we thought we wanted.

There in an end cage was a cat I had never laid eyes on one before. It was this hairless thing with tuffs on its ears. Looked like fur boots on, with great big eyes, turned up noise, ears falling off the side of its head. I gasped, I giggled, and I almost dropped to my knees helpless with laughter. It was the weirdest, funniest thing I ever saw. I was a goner.

Sat night I hauled my husband down off the ski slop and told him he had to come with me to the cat show Sunday....
The breeder/owner of this cat said, "Anyone who wants the female Tortie has to pay $350 for her, register her, show her immediately, breed her, and register a cattery name with CFA."

We went outside to have a smoke and talk. Came back in and said we’d take both.
Makes me laugh today, there’s no way in Hell someone can get started in Devons like this today.

In those days they were throw away cats in the sense that they weren’t recognized by CFA.
When approached the Board of Directors said no to Devon Rex. They said they have the “Rex” cat and you’re a variation.

We kept our end of the bargain with the breeder and showed the Tortie girl. My husband thought showing was the most boring thing. We showed Lucy in the 4-8 month kitten class then learned about opens and winner’s ribbons and became a Champion and I said, Halleluiah, I’m done!!! Then the breeder said we had to Grand her!...

Back then there were Rex cats only. We were told Devons were to be bred to the Rex standard. Eventually Devons were allowed in as provisional. Judges did not like them – No rosettes - or breed ribbons. Some Judges would ask questions and were interested and intrigued by these cats. CFA finally accepted Devons as seperate from Cornish Rex in 1984 but it took 4 or 5 years before Devons started making finals."

I'm not asking for a lot, just an hour

Knit Natives;
I have bad news. My knitting allotment has dropped from upwards of 65 hours a week down to 8. I’m too tired to knit, or even think about knitting. The good news is that I’m semi-able to knit garter stitch in this state. My Hanne vest (not the one in this picture) is coming along nicely since that’s roughly 575sts of mindless knitting. Although, I was working on it one evening and fell asleep I was so wiped out. They tell me that my energy levels will pick back up soon. I’m not sure if I believe them.

Which leads to my challenge for August. Can I just knit an hour a day? I’m not asking for completed items or complicated projects. Simple socks or my Hanne are fine. Just an hour. I’ll report in each day and see how I do.

Technically I completed the July sock knit alongs. My On Holds are a major disappointment. Yes they are finished. But they are super way too big. Too big even for The Boyfriend. I’ve put them in the finished items bin, perhaps their time will come. My July SKA Mystery Socks don’t need to be finished until August 31st so I’ll keep chugging away at those, maybe. I’m not wild about the color choices and am having a hard time finding the motivation. Maybe once I get to the color work again I’ll become more interested.

In the mean time I'm jumping in on the August socks from the toe up kal and casting on the Seaweed socks in a yarn TBD.