Monday, February 28, 2011

MollyDoodle Monday

I'm changing from Zentangle Monday to MollyDoodle Mondays because I don't follow the 'rules' of proper 'Zentangling' which involves special paper tiles and pens and methods. I just do what I do as usual and bumble through it my own way. At any rate. Here are this week's tangles in no particular order.

Bits and Pieces

Dale (this was for my friend Dale and contains things that remind me of her-fans, baskets, music, Native American beads, dragon scales for strength and calico flowers like the ones on the dresses she wears. 
This one is for all the folks who didn't see the moose in 'Northern Maine'.   This guy is a wee bit more obvious. See if you can spot him!
I think this one is my favorite of the week. The pussy willows are my current favorite motif!

Pussy willows and lupine.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Wonderful Weekend

Got out a bit more this weekend than I have in weekends past. I was beginning to get a wee bit 'o the cabin fever doncha know. I went over the Victor Allen's on Saturday afternoon to knit with Elizabeth, Jen and Linda. Still working on the cable sweater. I have two repeats on the back finished. 4 more to go!  Then just two sleeves, sew it together and I'm done. Estimated time of delivery-November 2016.

On Saturday night, I made cookies in anticipation of lunching with Dale and Mary on Sunday.  Chocolate Chip with Oreos in the middle. Oh, they'll kill you, but what a way to go!  They created a brief Internet sensation when I posted them on Facebook.  I'll post the recipe over on Molly Bee's Kitchen.

I hadn't seen Dale in many moons and missed her terribly.  I packed up the cookies that I hadn't farmed out to neighbors, and went to meet her and sister-Mary, over at Outback Steak house. The fillet and crab cakes were divine, but my soul needed the nourishment of time spent with my Wisconsin 'family' even more. They are both such a delight and I'll not let so much time pass between visits from now on. 

I was so energized after our lunch that I went crock pot shopping.  How exciting is my life?  And now I'm off to test it out with a zippy chicken soup. I am UNSTOPPABLE! How was YOUR weekend?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Clearly An Intervention Needs To Be Staged....

This week has been a 'Stop The Madness, For G*d's Sake Stop The Madness'  kind of week on so many fronts...

Governor Kim Jong Walker's megalomaniac  'No Compromise Or Negotiation And If You Don't Agree With My Plan I'll Start Using Extortion' style of non-democratic, political madness. STOP IT!

The Misery for Entertainment's Sake Mongers- Things aren't grim enough in our Capitol right now?  This historical action by the people of Wisconsin isn't newsy enough for you? You have to spread 'riot' news even though there aren't any?  STOP IT!

Snow, Ice, Freezing Rain, More Snow..STOP IT!!! (Note: THREE exclaimation points).

Incessant Whining-You're tired? You're bored? You're uninspired? You chipped a nail? You're mired in your own gloom? Guess what? You're a victim of your own making. STOP IT!

I'm included in the last group myself. I'm feeling a bit tether-less, homeless and at loose ends. Today for the first time, I found myself seriously considering moving back East. Decided to pull myself up by the boot straps and  started steps to decide what I really want to do and the what's involved in actually doing it!
No more useless dithering and  wallowing!


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I'd Like To Thank The Academy...

Guess what you guys?! I won an award! The proprietor of PZ Designs picked MY blog as one of the group she awarded a 'Blog With Style' award!  I KNOW right?! I was surprised and honored. You should all  pop on over to her blog. She makes some wicked gawjus jewelry for her Etsy shop.

Seems this here award comes with a few rules and stipulations.  Number one is to tell 7 things about myself.  I know, like you'll don't already have too much information in that department  right?  But I want the award dammit, so here goes...hmmm 7 things you DON'T already know....Deep Dark Secret Time...Heck! I'll even give you 3 bonus ones!

1.  I love awards and will follow all the rules to get one.
2.  One time I beat up a deaf kid in a bowling alley. It was an accident, but he still deserved it.
3.  I can remove my socks without using my hands. Talent or super power?  Don't judge until you've seen the  show.
4.  I once fed 20 something baby raccoons with  baby bottle. By the time # 20 was fed, it was time to go   back to #1. Lather. rinse. repeat as needed.
5.  I was once in a PBS movie about Admiral Perry. (Before you ask, I was not cast as Admiral Perry although I knocked the audition out of the ball park!)
6. I have eaten horse (and shamefully liked it a little).
7.  I have touched and communed personally with a baby tiger, an albino wallaby, apilot whale, an orca, moose, bears, deer, groundhogs, a fox, a monkey, dolphins, a 50# python, seals, bat rays, sharks,  an otter, an alligator and all other manner of wild beasties.
8.  I fully anticipate that my obituary will reflect some sort of mishap in the #7 department.
9.  I can sing the alphabet backwards even the ' cbas my know I now' part. Again, no judging 'til you see the act. Tickets on sale through Ticket Master or see me at the door the night of the show. 
10. I once rocked in a rocking chair for 12 hours straight  for charity. And that was before I did handwork!  Seemed like a big feat then, but now that there's so much!

So there you have it. Bet you didn't know at least one of those things, if not all 10!  I'll be happy to answer any questions and address any concerns you may have via email!

The second part of the award is to pick 15 other blogs to whom to present the award.  The hard part about that one is limiting it to 15, but do it I must.  I like to think of it as the 'should I be unable to fulfill my duties as a 'Blogger With Style' can turn to these stylish folks.

Whew!  If you think 'She forgot MY blog', consider yourself nominated too and join in on the fun. Of course that swill negate statement # 1 on my Seven Things About Me list...

Anyway, thanks again PZ Designs!  This has been really fun.  Now get out there Stylish Bloggers and start creating your lists!

In order to accept this award please do the following:

1. Put a picture of the Stylish Blogger Award in your blog.

2. Thank and link back to the person who awarded it to you.

3. Share 7 things about yourself.

4. Pass this award to 15 other creative bloggers!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Zentangle Monday 2/21/2011

Still uber excited about the Zentangling thing and had a pretty productive week. It's so relaxing and fun to do plus I love surfing the net for ideas for fill patterns.  It's more than a little obsessive though.  At one point I found myself in the ladies' room at work sketching the floor tiles.  Later in the week I was outlining some netting in the produce section at the market on the back of my grocery list.  But I guess as long as I'm not hurting anybody...and I'm definitely not harming any of the dust bunnies that dwell under every surface of my nest!  Here is this week's work...

 Round and Round

Stuff and Nonsense

Apple Corer 
Northern Maine

The Lion Sleeps Tonight


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

You Know You Have A Sock Problem When...

About 1/2 my stash...All washed up and ready for one or two more rounds before they get put away until Fall!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Zendoodle Monday

I've decided to try and keep my new-found fascination and love affair with Zentangles and Zendoodling confined to Mondays and not post them everyday even though I am churning them out at an alarming rate.   I finished the one I was working on this weekend. What was supposed to be a rope frame looks like a pie crust so I've decided to call it Pie From Another Planet.
This stuff is so addictive and makes you see doodle patterns everywhere. Yesterday I was obsessed with trees.
I have about 75 more pics almost exactly like these. Wanna see?
And I also tried to convince Steve to steal his plate a breakfast because it has a stark black and white pattern on it. I couldn't help it.  I was 'drawn' to it.  Get it?   Drrrraaawwwwnnnn to it?  From now on I'll keep a sketch pad handy so I won't turn to a life of petty thievery to inspire my habit.

So to recap, my  new found, meditation practice of doodling to reduce stress and obsessive thinking has morphed into a new obsession of collecting patterns to doodle . There is something inherently wrong with that but for the love of all that's good, I can't think what it is right now. Maybe I'll think about it while I'm doodling!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Zentangles and Zippy Pups

Woke up today to sun and mist as the temps finally rose and the snows started to settle. It was none too soon either as I've been in a climb-the-clock-tower kind of mood all week.

I am amazed at how well Ben is healing. Sorry for the p*rno-esque shot but I wanted to show how the bruising is all but gone and the wound is pretty much sealed.  He woke up this morning 'Mr Zippy'.  He's been sore and sick to his stomach all week, but seems to have turned the corner. It's going to be a difficult few weeks of trying to keep his body down and calm when his 'inner Bentley' is a wild child careening around and ricocheting off things!
This week I discovered Zentangles.  I try to meditate at least 15 minutes every day.  I call it 'being still' though as meditation always brings forth visions of pretzel legs and 'ohms'.  It's not in my nature to not be doing 75 things at once, usually at warp speed, so since the first of the year, I've tried to set aside a little time each day to clear the old brain pan and try to calm-ta-hell-down (see 'clocktower' above).
Zentangling is essentially the art of controlled doodling for stress management.  I've always doodled; in school, meetings, when I'm on the phone, so when I read about this technique, I thought I'd try it. OMGosh! It SO works!  I spent the entire evening working on the one above (which kind of reminds me of a circus elephant).  For whatever reason, the repetitive shapes that you 'doodle' focus your mind so you don't think about anything else, but it doesn't require much 'concentration' so you just kind of relax and 'zen out'.  It's awesome and I can totally see using this technique during particularly stressful times when I obsess about things and those little movies play over and over in my head.
Actual 'Zentangles' are made on 3.5 and 3.5 inch squares of really nice paper with micron pigment pens. I just dug out an old sketch book and went to work,

Here's the one I'm working on now...
So there you have it, I've been searching for years for a hobby that is totally 100% useless and produces nothing in the end that can be eaten, worn or valued in any way and I've finally found it!  Monet, I am not, but it's the process not the end result that's the thing, and I'm really grooving on it that's for sure.  Google 'zentangles' to see work from artists that are actually good at it and see what YOU think!

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Baby Ben's Boo-Boo Knee

Warning! There are graphic post-surgery pictures coming up! Despite their ugliness, they are absolutely amazing looking for less than 24 hours after surgery.

Yesterday Dr. Silbernagel operated to repair Ben's knee. His knee joint was congenitally at about a 29% angle which put too much ware and tear and stress on his ligament and it gave way, just like his left one did about a year and a half ago.  Part of the knee bone was shaved down to change the angle to about 7% and a titanium plate and 6 screws were inserted to shore up the knee.

First they shaved the whole leg... well as a spot on the front and a patch above his tail where the epidural went in.

It mostly looks bad because of the bruising.
But in reality, it looks AWESOME!
All of the stitches are on the inside the the outside is glued so there's no oozing or mess.
I have to ice it every few hours and do range of motion exercises.  He has to stay quiet and off the furniture, but he is doing amazingly well. He's eating like normal, using it to toe touch, bending his knee when he sits and even went potty OK tonight.  We're over the hardest part.  On to healing!

PS. Dear God, Bentley respectfully requests that you warm things up outside since this recent cold snap is mighty chilly on his newly barenaked leg!  Thank you!

Saturday, February 05, 2011

To Prove That There Is Knitting Content

Finally finished the back of my St Enda sweater! If I counted all of the tinking and reknitting, this would have been the 75th back I've knit!  It looks a little wonky because it's unblocked, I'll wait until I have the back and sleeves done to block it....Estimated time of blocking=early spring 2015. Gosh I hope the Mayan Calendar is wrong!

If it's not wonky enough for you already, I've included an out of focus, not centered close up version for your enjoyment!
 Alice Starmore! I love you!

What are YOU knitting?

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Snowpocalypse 2011

Well, Jimmy the Wisconsin Groundhog couldn't tunnel his way out of his hole so he didn't see his shadow. He dug up about 6 feet into a snowdrift and then gave up and went back down to sleep. Smart rodent! I'm calling and early spring by default; only six more weeks of winter instead of a month and a half!
Outside my door after 'the guy' had snowblowed...snowblown? out.

Click to biggyfy and see how deep the snow blowers path is!

Darn Snow Plow!

I had a little 6 inch snowbank day before yesterday.
Here it's under my bedroom window after I shoveled at 6AM.
It's even higher now since my upstairs neighbor shoveled off her deck!

Note how high the snow is over the snow blower man's head!  The little guy in the driveway has a fake snow blower that he 'helps' with (he's four).  He also has a fake lawnmower and a fake leaf blower that he follows dad around with in the spring summer and fall. . Priming the pump! Good thinking parents!

This is what BooBoo Knee looks like. Ben has been trying to steal this woobie  all winter.  He has two of his own and so I won't let him have it. I was on the sofa last night and when I went to bed, I put it up on the back of the sofa so not even a piece of fringe was hanging down.  This is what I discovered this morning. (And no, he's not supposed to be on the  sofa but he'll have 6-8 weeks of mandatory 'sofa-offness' after Monday so I let it slide this week.) He was just staring forlornly at the 5 foot snowdrift blocking the patio door.  He was much happier when I shoveled it away and he realized he wouldn't have to 'hold it' 'til spring!