More Lizzie

Yesterday was all about Lizzie, which is just as it should be. However, after we took a long morning walk, she was ready for a nap, and I got to knit. So, just for a quick update on tibetan clouds, I finished the main pattern repeats. Just the final edging and a bind off now! I can’t believe it’s almost done!  I didn’t get the yarn for the upcoming project yesterday, so I had plenty of time on my day off to work on tibetan clouds.

Now on to Lizzie Bean. We had a pretty low key day overall. Lizzie slept quite a bit, which I think is pretty normal for another big change. She was rescued on August 1, so she’s dealing with two big home changes and a lot of shuffling in a 2 week period. I, of course, continued to take photos.

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Because those ears! Those funny ears!

She found her voice. She’s a very quiet dog overall, and since Coco didn’t bark at all, and she’s been so much like Coco, we wondered if she’d ever bark. Mr. Ink came home for lunch. When he walked in the door, she let out a lone, quiet “woof.” He greeted her, and then went to the kitchen to figure out what to have for lunch. He absent mindedly tapped on the fridge door. She tore out of the living room toward the door barking and growling! It startled us both quite a bit. Then we realized she thought someone was knocking. We weren’t looking for a guard dog, and we are glad she doesn’t bark much, but we’ll happily take the alert from her! Of course, after 17 years with a dog that didn’t bark, Mr. Ink thinks it’s great fun to instigate the barking. I told him he’d likely regret it if he kept it up.

We went to walk Miss Butterfly home from school. As soon as we got outside to do so, we had to spend 3 minutes rolling in the grass.

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This was the case every time we went outdoors.

It rained yesterday, and we realized that she doesn’t particularly want to be out in the rain. I went to take her outside, but when she realized it was raining, she noped right back into the house. I didn’t fight it, it was a precautionary trip outside. She’s totally housebroken, but she doesn’t indicate when she needs to go out so you have to just do the remembering for her. I think once she settles in, we’ll be able to read that better.

Mr. Ink and I went out to a pet store to pick up a few things. We needed a dog bed, and a kennel pad, as we threw out the one that Coco had. He had gotten so old and feeble toward the end that he was really struggling to not have accidents. So, a new pad was wise. While there, we picked out a soft squeaker toy and a kong. Since she had major work done on her teeth recently and is still on antibiotics, I wanted gentle toys. And, I didn’t want to spend too much, as the foster home told us she didn’t really play. So, we started with those two things.

Once home, Mr. Ink kind of teased her a bit with the soft squeaker toy. And then quite suddenly she began a very energetic game of fetch with Miss Butterfly, complete with jumping high in the air, and intermittent tug of war. We were absolutely delighted! We also need a more sturdy toy. I could hear it tearing as she tugged and tossed her head around with Miss Butterfly holding the other end. I guess her teeth aren’t hurting either?

She’s such a ridiculously polite dog. It’s almost as if Mr. Ink had to convince her it was ok to have a moment where she wasn’t perfectly good and polite. And then all bets were off for awhile!

I am back at work today. I wish I was able to take more time off with her, but I also realize she’ll have to get used to the routine of us being at work during the day. I am glad Mr. Ink will be home at noon to make sure she’s ok. I am also glad it’s Wednesday, not much longer before we have a weekend. Mr. Ink has to take a few more days off in September, so I plan to join him in that. So, Lizzie Bean will have people at home as much as is possible in the coming month! And you’ll probably be seeing a TON of her.

 

Big News!

At least it’s big news in our family! Hold on, this’ll be a long post!

Last week, after about a year’s worth of discussion, Mr. Ink and I finally decided we’d start looking for another dog companion. Coco, the 17 year old sweetie, left us 2 years ago and I’ve so missed having him around. One of the caveats to getting a dog was that a new dog would have to be “like Coco.” Of course, it’s hard to identify what that means exactly. And, in the end, we decided a new dog would have to be pretty calm, and good, and sweet. And not a puppy, no way! It MUST like other dogs, as Miss Marja’s Max is super important to us, and we didn’t want to make Max unwelcome in our home. That part is actually different from old Coco who couldn’t care less about other dogs.

So, I came across a dog from a local rescue group, and she looked like just the thing. Her foster mom’s descriptions were very Coco like. I showed her to Mr. Ink, and Mr. Ink immediately said no. Because she was long haired and he didn’t want another long haired dog. I kept pushing, I admit. I mentioned that this dog seemed like Coco. I pushed again. He showed me other dogs. I rejected those dogs. I kept looking at THIS dog, and giggling at her photos. And, I showed him more photos and he’d giggle too. Then I reminded him that unlike his 17 years with Coco, he’d have me to share her care with. And he looked at her photos again and giggled. And then he said “Well, she makes me laugh. And that’s probably the best thing you can ask of a dog. Let’s go for it.”

We filled out the adoption paperwork, got accepted, and met Lizzie on Friday night. We went without Miss Butterfly, because if Lizzie wasn’t our dog, I didn’t want a disappointed kid. As it turns out, she was ABSOLUTELY what we were looking for. Mr. Ink agreed wholeheartedly. So, on Saturday, we had Miss Butterfly’s dad surprise her by bringing her to a meet and greet the rescue was holding. None of us would tell her where we were going ahead of time. She, too, loved  Lizzie and was eager to have her in our home.

Next step was the home visit, which we scheduled for last evening. This rescue asks for a home visit with all family members there. We didn’t really know what this would entail, as there was very little indication on their website. We used it as an excuse to organize and deep clean, something that always makes me happy anyhow. Miss Butterfly even cleaned her room really well. As it turns out, the home visit consisted only of hanging out in the living room, and then signing adoption paperwork and getting our photo taken.

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And then, the blue eyed mini aussie shepherd was ours! She’s 7 years old. She’s so Coco like it’s almost uncanny. Except that she’s way more confident. She loves everyone! She’s a wiggly ball of energy, but thus far we haven’t seen her do much in the way of actual playing. She adores other dogs, but if they get overwhelming, she backs right off and finds her humans.

After the foster mom left, we took a long walk together. Then we got home and Mr. Ink cooked dinner. Lizzie Bean was tired, and so she decided to watch him cook while laying on the floor at the entrance of the kitchen.

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She then finally settled in the living room for much love and pictures.

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She surprised us by being about to jump up on Miss Butterfly’s bed. That bed is really high! But she can make it, and then get right back down. Once Miss Butterfly went to bed, Mr. Ink and I hung out with her quite a bit. Then we went to bed, not quite knowing what the night would bring. I crawled in bed, and Mr. Ink headed to the shower. Lizzie took that opportunity to claim a spot on the bed, and she would not be pushed off. So, I lifted her off the bed, and indicated where I’d like her to sleep. I’d set out a folded puffy comforter with one of Miss Butterfly’s blankets over top. She then took the blanket off using the EXACT same method old Coco used to use.

Lizzie slept really well. I….couldn’t sleep again. TOO much excitement for me! But, I did love seeing her sleep stretched out on her side with her back against the bed frame….just like Coco. I took today off to help her settle in at home. I just couldn’t leave her home alone the first day! So, we were all up for breakfast this morning. Lizzie was right there in the kitchen watching Mr. Ink cook!

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I suspect all his cooking will look like this now. But, she doesn’t beg. Not while he’s cooking, and not at the table. We really haven’t got any bad habits to break yet!

It was Miss Butterfly’s first day of 8th grade. Woohoo! So, we walked her to school and met up with friends. And once we left her at school, we took a nice long walk together. Thus far, and awesome day.

So, we got a dog! A 29 pound bundle of fur, the exact size of Coco. It’s uncanny. I am sure at some point I’ll start feeling like this is what Lizzie does, rather than this is what Coco used to do. But today is not that day. We feel like old Coco would have approved.

This Week August 14-20

From last week:

  • 3 repeats on the tibetan clouds stole. I am REALLY getting eager to finish this one. Also, I am bored with the two spectra scarves, but I don’t want to start anything new.
    • So, I did 5 repeats! I have 2.5 left before the edge pattern, and then I am done. It’s slightly possible this could get done before the yarn arrives for my “drop everything and knit” marathon.
  • Accomplish all the stuff in my planner.
    • I did this too, though with varying degrees of success. Despite having done much of it, I have to move some things to the next week to redo.
  • Go on a bike ride. With friends, a bike commute, doesn’t matter. Just, go on a bike ride.
    • Got that one too! It was pretty short, as we were riding with someone new to biking and another one just back on the bike after major abdominal surgery this spring.
  • School open house, and get all the stuff that belongs in the locker into the locker. (This’ll take a couple bags, not just one book bag.)
  • Get step goals on days that I do not ride bike.
    • I am counting this one as well. Basically, there was one day I didn’t quite meet my step goal. But, I had done way more the day before, and I took that into consideration the day after and did way more that day too. Which meant I got more in than I would have had I just taken the time to meet the goal the day I did not. It counts!

In addition to that, the entire house has had a very big deep cleaning. All except for one toilet bowl, as I ran out of toilet bowl cleaner. I do have one last thing to do tonight, I need to wash the kitchen floor.

I also went to the container store, which was awesome. I got a bunch of things that really helped organize our bathroom. I didn’t even get all that I had planned, the storage I did get was so good that I ended up with lots of extra room with just what I did get. I am thrilled! In a month or two, reorganizing the linen closet will be next! For the record, both Mr. Ink and Miss Butterfly are thrilled with the reorganization as well.

Mr. Ink went around the house and fixed all the small things that have piled up this spring and summer. You know how it goes. One little thing will break and one might say “I’ll get to that soon” but it falls off the radar, and then another thing breaks, and that goes in the same pile, and so on, until you have quite a lot of work to get done! The only thing not fixed was his bike tire, and that’s likely because I made him go for a bike ride. (He took the bike without a flat.) So truly, this was a wonderful busy weekend full of getting stuff done that was beneficial to all of us!

For this week:

  • Daily step goals
  • One bike ride
  • Work on knitting marathon
  • Get all the stuff in my planner done. (Let me just go add to that now!)
  • Clothing donation. I need to get about 3 very large bags of clothing out of the house.

That’s…about it. I mean, I could probably add to it, but I am EXHAUSTED! Hah!

Extra Hours

You know, I am often looking for extra hours in the day, but I so rarely find them! Yesterday though, someone must have snuck a few extra hours in. In part I am sure I felt this way due to a case of insomnia. I went to bed Friday night at 11, but woke up very early Saturday morning and couldn’t get back to sleep. I finally got up, wound some yarn, worked on tibetan clouds, and finally was able to sleep again at 4:30 am. Which was about the time Mr. Ink woke up and couldn’t get back to sleep. But apparently we didn’t need that sleep? Because I woke up at 7, and got a wild hare to deep clean the house. Which I did. Except for the bathrooms, those are on the agenda today.

I got started right after breakfast, we had an appointment at 11, so we did that, then back home for more cleaning. After lunch I decided to get started on the laundry. Now, Miss Butterfly had told me that she thought there was something wrong with the dryer, but I told her the problem was that the washer sometimes leaks water back onto the clean and spun clothes, so if she doesn’t pull the clothes immediately, the dryer takes FOREVER. She was like “No. That’s not it.” So, I decided to do a test run with laundry, and she was correct, something was wrong with the dryer.

I called Mr. Ink in, and I suggested that maybe our first step be to see if the exhaust tube was clogged. So, we took that off and cleaned it. This is a chore I’ve wanted to get done for about a year, so I am calling it a big win. Plus, it smelled vaguely of wet dog when we cleaned it, and we haven’t had a dog in 2 years so it REALLY needed to be done. But, that wasn’t the problem. So, Mr. Ink began exploratory surgery on the thing. Thankfully, he doesn’t think it’s terminal, but at 4 pm all the appliance parts places were closed, so he couldn’t go get the part he needs. (Let me just say here what a pleasure it is to live with someone mechanically minded? Oh my goodness, home ownership would be so much more expensive without him!)

So, I hung up the clothing, indoors, and then outdoors on the telephone wire that isn’t used. Unfortunately, the test run of laundry I did was not the one that most needed to be done. Mr. Ink’s work clothing still needed to be washed, so I did another load, and hung those all over the house too.

Now, anyone who has followed my blog for any amount of time knows that I’ve been wanting to rearrange Mr. Ink’s den of slack. I mean, he was so slack in there, that you could no longer walk. There was an extra desk in there that was meant to replace the one he had his computer on, the chair was broken and we bought a new one for him early in the spring, but that has just sat in the basement waiting for the room reorganization. There were plastic bins and boxes full of stuff all over in there, because a certain someone who is not me never bothered to unpack. And to be fair, at one point there wasn’t anywhere to PUT it. But, with the addition of a dresser in there, we did have room, he just didn’t feel like doing the work. Well, I nagged a bit, and when that didn’t work, I tried sweet faces and kind words, and then I even resorted to goofy faces. Which finally did it.

Guys, that room was so dirty! We got the old desk out of there, and then I even made him pull up the rug and turn it around so he could wear down the other side with his dirty shoes and office chair. And I could clean under it. It was a big job, no question. And it’s not done really, there’s still a lot that needs sorting. But, the bins and boxes are gone! The stuff that was meant for donation is gone! And it’s looking pretty good. Want to see?

This is the 360 view. There’s even plenty of open space! He said he wanted to add a large plant in that open space, so I had to remind him that his goofy colorful chair was going there when I eventually get new furniture for the living room. Now that we got that far, I realize I need to reorganize my yarn stash too. I’ve let it slide mostly because if the room is a pit, why bother? Now the room is so much less of a pit!

Meanwhile in all that work? I managed to finish up the singles on bobbin 3 and spin the singles for bobbin 4 of my purple batts!

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Seriously, I couldn’t believe it. So, after dinner I got started on plying. I finally settled on a 2 ply for this one. 10 ounces of 2 ply yarn will be amazing yardage, maybe even to the tun of sweater amounts. And, the yarn is turning out so nice! It’s so rich looking.

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I am hoping for another day with extra hours today, but I am not sure one can get so lucky for 2 days in a row of this! I left the bathroom deep cleaning for today in part because I want to get to the container store to see if I can find a way to make the bathroom more organized in a user friendly manner. The current set up isn’t working for any of us and is just making us all a little frustrated. Seems like between that and general errands, my day should just fly by! And, I don’t even mind because it’s been awhile since I’ve been so inspired to get things done in this manner!

Stalled

I am stalled out on new photos. I mean, about 15 minutes of knitting when I get home will have me through the completion of 4 repeats (out of 8.5) on the second side of tibetan clouds. But, for the most part, it looks just the same as always. I have still been spinning my purple batts, and constantly changing my mind about how to ply them, but they look just like the previous photo of the finished bobbin. Really, I am stalled out.

So, I am going to break from the norm. For Miss Marja’s christmas gift last year, I made her some red batts.

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I can’t remember what all I put in there, but silk, sari silk, bamboo, all of those were certainly included with the red mohair base. Miss Marja has been spinning these up on support spindles over the past few months. Every once in awhile I go over there and see another ball of singles hanging out. I think it was a pretty big batch of fiber, so it’s no surprise it has taken awhile, but she sent me a photo to post here of those singles being plied! (Thank you Miss Marja for fixing my stalled blog!)

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Isn’t that pretty! It looks so nice, especially on that gorgeous wheel!

We’ve been continuing along on our busy week, it’s going just fine despite the busy. We had open house at the school last evening, which basically consisted of me following her around the school while she touched base with teachers old and new. While following, you can imagine me gasping at the size of the boys and the way they would smile at my kid! Seriously. Because the gasping did happen.

We are glad it’s Friday around here. Mr. Ink’s finger is much improved, and he lanced it himself on Wednesday, which was such a relief to him. He’s taking good care of it, wearing nitrile gloves when watering the garden or working in the kitchen, and while it’s still pretty swollen, improvement is seen daily. Nevertheless, we’ve decided to skip the weekend bike ride. It’s just not sounding appealing after a busy day, and not being able to prep for it since Mr. Ink wasn’t sure he’d be able to ride.

In other news, I’ve taken on a project that should provide a little blog interest shortly. I will be doing a Stephen West shawl with a very quick turn around time. This will be the type of project where the knitting must go everywhere with me, so it should see considerable daily progress. So with that in mind, I’ll be taking daily progress photos as soon as the yarn arrives and I get started. We will see just how fast I can knock out a project while also holding down a full time job and a busy life!

The Promised Picture

We had a lovely evening yesterday, despite being a bit sleep deprived. Once home from work, I grabbed a quick nap, and then when Mr. Ink got home we headed to the local botanical gardens and met up with Miss Marja and wonderful Max the dog. We took a walk through the gardens and laughed at Max’s antics. Mr. Ink wandered around seeing all his favorite trees. This was a great distraction for someone who got no sleep the night before and was in more pain last evening than he had been before. It also kept him out of the dirt and wet of the garden, which is what his doctor wants.

Tonight the plan is to go to our first pub trivia with teams we don’t know. We participated in one pub trivia event at a birthday party, which made it a great, low key way to compete. We both loved it, so we are trying again with another couple who play regularly. Again, this is designed in part to keep Mr. Ink out of the dirt and wet. And ideally distracted.

Though to be perfectly honest, I suspect he’s going to need to go back to the doctor. This is day 2 of meds, and it’s only getting worse. We discussed it this morning. He mentioned he’d prefer not to go back, because he’s worried they’ll want to lance it. But if you ask me, if that’s what needs to be done it would be a relief. We’ll have to see what happens.

As a follow up from the sleep over, I told Miss Butterfly no more sleep overs for quite some time because I needed to trust she’d obey my simple directives, and I needed to trust her and her friends to do as I say when they are in my home and I am asleep. She tried to play this off as they accidentally fell asleep in the living room, but I told her that the amount of blankets and pillows in there indicated fully that this was pre planned. She knew she was caught and didn’t even remotely fuss or sigh about it actually. I then asked her to clean up her mess all over the house, which she also did with no fussing or sighing. So, I guess that’s good? Though she’s also aware that she has to be extra special careful after a sleep over because I often think the exhaustion leads to attitude problems that wouldn’t otherwise surface, so I already don’t allow them often.

Despite keeping ourselves busy in the evenings, I’ve managed to rock out about half a repeat on tibetan clouds already. I am shooting for 3 repeats this week, but if I could get more in, that would be amazing. It’s been a strong start.

And now enough of the chatting, here’s the yarn photo.

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That’s a really great purple! It’s very rich. I had originally thought to do this as a cabled yarn. I divided the batts into 4 piles. However, I just don’t have enough in the way of bobbins to do that easily. I may need to invest in another jumbo bobbin or two, another regular size one, and a kate that would accommodate them. I think I’ll wait, could be a good christmas gift. So, this bobbin may not be completely done after all. I will need to add a little more fiber to it in order to make the final yarn a 3 ply instead. In any case, it’s just beautiful and is going to make a very fantastic yarn. The biggest problem really is that it’s messy. The batts are ridiculously messy, and I do end up with fiber all over me when I spin this. So, I am tending to save it for days where I am at home and not leaving the house again. That’s not been the case much since Sunday.

It’s only Tuesday, and feels like a Thursday. We were supposed to be away all weekend on a bike ride, but with Mr. Ink’s finger, I don’t think that’s wise. At least, we are holding off making the decision for now. We’ve learned our lesson in the past, and we didn’t purchase our tickets this time, figuring we’d work that out closer to the event. I am feeling quite grateful for that!

Hope everyone is having a decent week!

This Week August 7-13

From last week:

  • 1 repeat on Tibetan Clouds stole
  • One bike ride with friends
  • Back to school shopping with Miss Butterfly
  • Work on new spinning project (will explain more tomorrow.)
  • Do ALL THE THINGS in my planner that are work related and not work related. 

So, I got all the things done! That being said, I am also aware that my list was deliberately light. I knew it would be a busy week, and as it turned out, it was far busier than I’d imagined. I feel so happy to have gotten the list done anyhow.

It’s been a bit nutty these 24 hours. First of all, I allowed Miss Butterfly to have a sleep over. With the caveat that I had to be at work this morning, so they needed to not make a bunch of noise. She’s pretty good about that generally so I wasn’t too worried. They’d hoped to put a tent in the living room and sleep there, but I told them they could not, as I needed to be able to have my morning before work, spinning and knitting as needed.

At some point yesterday, Mr. Ink showed me that his finger was a bit red, swollen and painful. Now, this guy never complains. He doesn’t go to the doctor. Even when something is VERY obviously wrong, he won’t go. Later in the evening, he again mentioned that his finger hurt, and I took a look at it. It had gotten more swollen, both joints were swollen. I investigated it for streaking near what seemed to be the infection site, and thankfully saw nothing because I knew that the mental energy I’d have to go through to get him to GO TO A DOCTOR would be pretty overwhelming. I went to bed.

Mr. Ink came to bed later on. At 3 am he got up. He wandered out of the room, he wandered back in the room, he laid down. I kind of just kept trying to sleep. Until he said “My finger REALLY hurts. I am sort of thinking maybe I should go to the ER?”  I said “Well, it seems to me that if someone who doesn’t ever go to the doctor and doesn’t complain of pain is telling me he needs to go to the ER, HE SHOULD GO TO THE ER.” That was all it took, he was back up, dressed, and out the door in no time. He was back home around 5:30 am which I think is really good. With antibiotics, because yes, he had a nasty and quickly spreading infection.

I get up, and look at Miss Butterfly’s open room door. I stick my head in, and immediately get worried because the girls aren’t in there. Then I look in the living room and see that they are asleep on the floor, just like I told them not to be. I asked Mr. Ink, “Did you tell the girls they could sleep in the living room?” “No…why?” is his response. So, I tell him we aren’t making any extra attempts at quiet because I told them to sleep in her bedroom.

We made a big breakfast, I ran the dishwasher, I ran the garbage disposal, I put my shoes on early, we turned on lights, we went about our business as usual. Unfortunately, the girls really did seem to sleep through ALL of that. At one point Mr. Ink sees me drinking coffee and looking at them there in the living room. He says “You seem to be seething in their general direction!” Yes. Yes I was! I couldn’t get over them to get my knitting or spinning, and I was planning on taking photos this morning! So irritated.

All that to tell you that I don’t have new photos. I did start, and got pretty far into a new spinning project using these batts I made earlier this year.

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I may not have photos of the singles, but I can tell you that it’s making some really amazing yarn!

For this week:

  • 3 repeats on the tibetan clouds stole. I am REALLY getting eager to finish this one. Also, I am bored with the two spectra scarves, but I don’t want to start anything new.
  • Accomplish all the stuff in my planner.
  • Go on a bike ride. With friends, a bike commute, doesn’t matter. Just, go on a bike ride.
  • School open house, and get all the stuff that belongs in the locker into the locker. (This’ll take a couple bags, not just one book bag.)
  • Get step goals on days that I do not ride bike.

And, on this little sleep, that’s all I can think of right now! So much tossing and turning last night. Today is going to be LONG, but hopefully punctuated by an after work nap.