Monday, December 27, 2010

Spencer Day Finale

Pattern: Tweed Boyfriend Sweater from Melissa Leapman's Continuous Cables
Yarn: Valley Yarns Stockbridge (Webs store brand, 50% alpaca, 50% wool), 10 skeins, bought at Stitches West a few years ago.
Needle: US Size 8
Size made: Sub-small. The pattern is written as men-size, so the smallest is 42, while I need about 38 to 40. I took out one small panel on each size (6st each). The finished size fits me well.
Cost: About $40
Notes: There were some continuous cable squares in the Great American Aran Afghan, and someone on Ravelry mentioned Leapman has a much easier way to work these cables. She does. Instead of starting a new set of cable with new yarn (and extra ends), she puts in some increases on the bottom. Give it a try and you'll see what I mean. Why Spencer Day? I was planning my new project in the summer, during our weekly Jazz on the Plazz concerts; one of the last acts was a young (good looking) performer named Spencer Day. When I decided on this particular pattern, a certain male figure in my life claimed it was because the male model looked like Spencer Day. So I'm going to name it such, rub it in.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Que Sera Sera Finale

Pattern: My own (there is really not a pattern)
Yarn: Assorted sock yarn, all fingering weight
Needle: US Size 6
Cost: About $80  
Previous post: September 2009
Notes: The original idea was to use up some of my left over self patterning sock yarns, and a mitered square blanket seemed like a good option. In the end it became a very long shawl, which I have used a few times and no one accused me of wearing a blanket. It's light weight, colorful, and very unique.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Pugtacular 2010

Last Sunday we went to the annual Pugtacular, a big pug party where you can see hundreds of snorting slobbering sometimes screaming pugs. Bucky won two out of three events we entered -- first place in senior pugs (Bucky, at 15 years old, was the oldest in the building), third place in pug race (we had to enter him as physically challenged, Bucky made it to the end through some detours). Bucky and I got eliminated in the first round for Lap Pugs, one'd figure we should be able to win that with a pug hardly walks!

We were interviewed by the local paper and they put Bucky's picture as the headliner in the article. Here is the link.

Bucky's first place winning was a Christmas wreath with a stuffed animal and cookies as decorations. While I was talking to the reporter Bucky snatched off one of the cookies and ate it right there. He hasn't had a hard cookie in well over a year, but he crunched it all up in no time, licked his chops, and wanted to attacked the next one.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Bucky Turns Fifteen!

We celebrated Bucky's fifteenth birthday last Friday, November 5th. A few days ago, he threw a big fit because his human brother was eating chicken nuggets and would share with him. Since he (Bucky) can't eat most other things any way, for his birthday he got a chicken nugget. I did put a candle in it! 

I didn't get any good pictures, so instead I made this little video to capture his years with us. I shared this with the pug group on Ravelry, and I was very touched by everyone's comments and well wishes for our old pug. He's old and fragile, but not a bit timid because of his short stature or inability to get where he wants to be. He's still our feisty little dog, full of character, full of life.

One thing I learned after 15 years, one can never take enough pictures and videos of our dogs. Enjoy them while you can.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Bucky Napping with a Baseball

The other day I got home and saw this cute scene. Henry apparently left the baseball in the dog bed, and Bucky decided to cuddle up with it. It's the perfect size for him. I bet he had some sweet dreams hitting home runs. We used to joke that Bucky as a batter had the smallest strike zone, and he'd be constantly challenging the pitcher to throw him a good pitch. Then he'd hit the ball three feet away, we called that The Bucky Ball.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Henry in the Press

Humane Society's eNewsLetter came out yesterday and Henry was featured in the Two Paws up section. Click here to see the newsletter, and scroll all the way down to the bottom to see the boy with Dino the big bionic dog.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Humane Society Visit, End of 4-40

Last Friday we went to Humane Society to drop off our huge collection, and meet a few people. I had emailed back and forth with the volunteer coordinator previously, and she wanted us to meet some folks in Marketing. They even arranged a volunteer photographer to take pictures of Henry.

Here is Henry with Dino the socialization mascot in front of the donation center. Dino had hip replacement done by the good doctors at the Humane Society, and of course Humane Society covered the costs too. Henry never had close contact with big dogs before (they are right about the same size, 75 lbs), so Dino was quite a new experience for him. Dino's foster dad let Henry walk Dino for a bit and give him treats. Henry recorded the experience on the 4 Weeks, Forty Blanket blog.

Next to the donation center is a door that leads to the surrender counter. Every time we went to donate someone went into the surrender door with a crate. If you are thinking about bringing a new pet home, please consider the shelter.

To wrap up the 4-40 project, we reached the target on Monday when we picked up from three separate locations. A woman lives in Los Gatos mountains offered to meet us in town, so we met her in the high school where her child was in band practice and which Henry will be attending in three years. Then we went to a home in Almaden for our second pick up. This was through Henry's post on lmtrade, a Yahoo Group I started years ago for Las Madres families to buy/sell/trade household items. A woman responded to Henry's email and offered a big bag of blankets and towels. In the afternoon, we went to our third pick up of the day in Los Altos. This was through Henry's post on a Freecycle group, another big bag of blankets and towels. I think these people really like Henry.

Back in July I told my mom about the 4-40 project, so she collected a bunch of stuff from her friends and neighbors. On Tuesday we went and picked these up. Our final total was 55 blankets, countless towels, sheets, and lots of toys. I'm very happy with what we've accomplished, very happy with how Henry managed the project and made his summer meaningful.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Operation Blanket Update

We are in week three of 4 Weeks Forty Blankets and things are going very well. To date we received 28 blankets, some pads and small rugs, bags and bags of sheets, towels, and even more bags of stuffed animals. We have a visit scheduled for Humane Society tomorrow morning when we, hopefully, might be able to hand some of these items directly to the adoptable dogs.

Now the question is, how am I going to fit all these in my little car?

(Bucky is not invited on the trip, although he certainly would enjoy a romp on the big lawn and the playground that Humane Society set up for exercising the dogs. He was here to supervise our photo shoot.)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Bucky on Vacation

We spent early part of this week on the central coast of Califonia, which we planned to visit last summer but didn't make it since we couldn't find a dog sitter. Now that Bucky is our only dog and with his fragile state I don't trust others taking care of him, he went along for the ride.

The ride he had! Everywhere we went he had fans. We picked restaurants with outdoor seating, and people stopped to admire "your cute old pug". At an icecream shop a girl volunteered to bring a bowl of water outside so she could meet "the cute puppy". The place we stayed was right on the beach, and Henry and Dad enjoyed hours of whacking a paddleball around. To my surprise, Bucky had a great time exploring the beach. He doesn't walk very well, and I thought it's more difficult for him to walk on the soft sand. Instead the sand cushioned his falls, and he really liked all the new smells.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Four Weeks Forty Blankets

Henry and I have August off from camps and work, so we are going to collect 40 blankets for the Humane Society. Henry is mostly in charge of the project, and I'm helping him here and there with ideas and most importantly, driving. So far we have collected eight blankets and tons of stuffed animals. Yesterday we did our first drop off at Humane Society and visited some of the adoptable dogs.

You can follow our progress on our blog: 4 Weeks, Forty Blankets; or our Facebook page in the same name.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Box 96 Finale

Pattern: Box 96 Pullover by Mari Lynn Patrick, Interweave Knits Summer 2010 cover
Yarn: West Valley Alpacas Classic DK Yarn
Needle: US5
Cast on: May 10, 2010
Cast off: July 22, 2010
Notes: After Great American Aran Afghan and Pagode, I was pretty burned out on colors, so I really wanted something simple and plain for a change. This little top was on the cover of then latest IK in blue, so I knitted it in white and added a bit of blue trim. It was a fun, quick knit, perfect for the summer. If you follow the pattern the arrow would be off center, so I changed it to center decrease to make it symmetrical.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

DOT Spotlight Rerun

More than two years ago Trinket and Bucky were featured on Dogs on Thursday, and I just realized that I never ran that post here on our own blog. Shame on me. So here it is in full. Remember this was written in January 2008.


Trinket is my first dog, the first new member of our little family. Trinket is Chihuahua and Fox Terrier mix; he’ll turn thirteen on January 30th.

Couple of years into our marriage, my husband and I still felt like newly weds, but looking at each other across the dinner table every night was getting a bit dull. We needed something to jazz up our lives.

A local rescue group, CARE, was holding an adoption fair on a Wednesday evening, April 6, 1995. It was love at first sight. The foster mom was showing Trinket to other people, and I followed her around like a puppy. When she got good and tired of that she handed me Trinket, “do you want to hold him?” I held Trinket and Bill signed the contract.

At first we were pretty determined to bring up a presentable good citizen; we changed our minds within twenty four hours. Although we tried very hard to be good doggie parents, our little puppy denied the fact that he was a dog, he insisted on eating with us (our food) and sleeping with us (on my pillow). When we left him home alone in a playpen, he chewed up the lanolin floor.

Trinket used to run circles around the kitchen every night, or leap a few feet into the air and land on a big deck in the back yard. He had so much energy and only had these two big humans to play with. We told him he deserved someone to bug the hell out of him.
Oh did he get what he deserves! In twelve years he endured two rescues, a pug brother, and worse of all, a little human brother. Being the smallest in size, Trinket insists on being the pact leader. Sometimes teeth are shown to enforce the leadership.


Bucky is a black pug. He turned twelve on November 5, 2007.

The following “How We Met” story has never been told before. You see, pug people are very protective of their beloved little apple heads and big ears, and we were fearful that someone might consider us traitors of the breed and retaliate.

We met Bucky in the flea market. It was January 6, 1996, first Saturday of the month and we were happily strolling along in De Anza Flea Market, as we did almost every month. 

Someone had two little puppies in a playpen, the boy, the little black one, was still available. The little guy had been lying on the cold hard parking lot for the entire day; all he had was some blue tarp for comfort. Yet he was playful nonetheless, tugging on the tarp, and when someone picked him up, he licked and chewed on girls’ hair. I looked in those big googly eyes and couldn’t put him down.

They were asking for $325, as is. Since it was the end of the day they lowered it to $300, and we took him home, with a flea.

We soon found out his energy level was simply out of this world. He ran around so much in the first two years, we could hardly take a decent picture of him. He was our perfect answer to Trinket’s puppy hood, ha-ha. They are about ten months apart, so Bucky has almost never spent more than a few hours alone in his life. He looks to the big brother for the next action. If Trinket thinks he hears a car is in the driveway, he starts to bark, and Bucky follows, and Bucky doesn’t know why Trinket is barking, and he doesn’t care.

Our four-legged children helped us proof to ourselves that we are indeed capable of keeping small creatures alive; in return, they got the human brother, Henry.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Bucky the lonesome traveler

Life as the only dog has been very nice to Bucky. He realizes that he now has sole privilege of manipulating his humans, especially his mom, and he's taking full advantage of it.

Here he is, at Stanford Shopping Center, taking a break during some busy wondering and flirting to rest his legs on the grass.

Enjoying Jazz on the Plazz, and a back scratch.

Friday, June 11, 2010

I Don't Have A Wooden Heart

I have taken so many pictures and video clips of our dogs over the years, they slowly scroll through my screen every day, like a random review of our lives together. I grabbed some of our favorites to put in this little video, to capture the spirit of Trinket from his bright eyed innocent babyhood, to a bouncy teenager, to an intelligent pack leader, to a playful goof ball, to our elderly sweet cuddle bug. They say a picture means a thousand words; a thousand pictures maybe a life time for a little dog, what's more, is the warm little spot in our hearts, and yours.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Trinket Thomas: January 30 1995 -- June 2 2010

These are the last pictures of Trinket.

This afternoon Trinket decided it was time to go, and he did. Our first born passed away around 3:30pm, on the living room floor with my hand on his chest help him breathing. After 15 years 4 months, his heart gave out. Trinket lived a happy healthy life. In human years Trinket would be about 80 years old.

We never thought Trinket would be the first to go. He's been very healthy and active, occasionally taking on a hunger strike to keep his slim and agile figure. He had first degree (lightest) mast cell tumor in 1998 when I was pregnant with Henry. I thought gain one lose one, but he pulled through the surgery and recovery, and the tumors never came back. In the last couple of months, despite his enlarged heart and refusal of his medicine, I still thought he's somehow pull through and live out his golden years as our only puppy, like he did when he first joined us at eight weeks old with sharp little milk teeth.

This afternoon less than an hour before he passed away he climbed up and down the stairs to follow me when I did laundry. Then he had some trouble breathing so I held him and tried to make him feel comfortable. It didn't seem to help much and I had to let him go and stumble away. I turned around a few minutes later and he was on the floor, looked like he just collapsed. He was very happy to see me, gave me a good wag of the tail. I helped him through the last moments.

Trinket joins Macie, our rescued Westie who passed away five years ago while with another family, and they so enjoyed playing tug. Bring it on.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Puggie is Hungry

"I want Trinket's dinner too!"

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Pagode Finale

I thought I'd never see this post.

Pattern: Pagode by Hanne Falkenberg
Yarn: Hanne Falkenberg No. 2 Shetland
Needles: Size 3
Colorway: Khaki/Straw/Ivory/Blue green/Flax/Rust
Cost: $130 from Knitswap email list
Cast on: April 2007
Cast off: April 28, 2010
Progress posts: Enabled, cast on, first rip, why oh why did I knit two identical fronts, ripped again

This was a spur of the moment purchase through an email list. It was half price and I was bored at work. But I truly love the yarn and the unique design. It's all done in garter stitch on size 3 needles. The fronts (plus half the sleeves till where the colors end in the picture) are done in two pieces, and back is one piece, sleeves are picked up from the edges after shoulders are seamed.

The project took three years to finish, partially because it's all garter stitch and becomes quite boring after awhile. But because of the simple garter stitches, I mostly kept it in the car, as something I worked on during long car trips. Because of the simple stitches and unique construction and pattern writing, one small slip in reading cost me quite a bit of trouble. There were three major rips, first I switched colors (ivory and wheat) in the first front, then I forgot the pocket on the second front; then once the second front was finished, it looked exactly the same as the first. I didn't have enough yarn to knit two more identical fronts (why would I want to do that anyway?), and couldn't just flip it over and use the back side. I had to rip out an entire finished front -- 386 stitches on the cast on edge.

But really, look at the finished product, it's all worth it.

Friday, May 07, 2010

GAAA Great American Aran Afghan Finale

Pattern: Great American Aran Afghan booklet
Yarn: Paton's Classic Wool (worsted weight)
Needles: US Size 8
Previous entries: First postSquares One to Six, Seven to Twelve, Twelve to Seventeen, Pre-edging
Cast on: February 18, 2009
Cast off: April 19, 2010
Finished size: 59inx88in, about 5ft x 7ft

It's been great fun being with this project for 14 months. There are twenty four squares in the booklet and I knitted every one of them, in the right order. Some of the squares were quite hard, even for me who consider myself a well-experienced cable knitter and willing to take on challenges.

The patterns call for different sizes needles, and I was lazy and only used size 8, so the squares were all different sizes. I believe the biggest one was about 14x14. After all the squares were done, I added the first round of black borders to make them all the same size. Some needed more and some less, some were rectangles and the borders made them into squares.

Arranging the squares was a lot of fun. I brought them to the South Bay Knitters winter retreat and had my friends help me. During the assembly I had to knit up more borders on the ones turned out too small or too short, and just knitted right onto their neighbors. I could have done a better job calculating gauge, sizing, etc., but I rather like the unevenness. It’s more art than math.
The final big cable braid all around took me a few more weeks. First I knitted a seven foot long braid by itself, sewed it onto the afghan, then knitted the rest right on. It was a very unportable project but kept me nice and warm every night while I worked on it.
When all was done, I wanted to take some good pictures to reflect the largeness and overall gorgeousness of this afghan. I wanted natural light, and I wanted some place large. I thought about putting it on the lawn with sheets or towels under it, but I’d have to climb on a ladder to take the pictures and be the neighborhood monkey for the rest of my life.
Earlier this week I had to visit my mom in Carmel, so I brought the afghan with me to stop at my favorite coastal area, the West Cliff in Santa Cruz. There is plenty of natural light, and the blankie looks rather pretty and petite against the Pacific Ocean. A lot of climbing involved in the photo session, up and down the rocks and trail, tumbling in the flowers, but it's all worthwhile.

Now some highlight of its past.
Yarn by my bedside.

Square one by Judy Sumner.

A tangled mess.

Group diagnosis at the retreat.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Trinket Is My Sweet Baboo

Between this picture and the one from couple weeks ago, you see all the humans that Trinket would allow to hold him. He's all Chihuahua in that regard, two people dog, no more. Our faithful pup he is.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Pill War II

Let review what we've tried for Trinket so far for his pill taking:
1. Provolone cheese (too strong)
2. Pill pockets (too doggie)
3. Turkey deli meat (too whatever)
4. Liver treats (gag)
5. Plain toast (too crumbie)

Here is the latest routine (it's been working for the past couple of days, so keep our fingers crossed it's going to stay working):
1. Dad gets a vanilla wafer cookie and break it into four pieces -- one half and two quarters
2. One quarter goes to Trinket
3. One quarter goes to Bucky because by now he knows Trinket gets treats and he can't miss out on it
4. Dad puts a dab of peanut butter on top of the half cookie and quickly sticks the pill in the middle of the peanut butter
5. Trinket gobbles it up
6. We wait and make sure he swallows, cause sometimes that rascal does spit out the pill and we have to start all over.

Bucky says he'd prefer the pill pocket, thank you. Wait, with some of that turkey please. And liver treats. On a piece of toast. Might as well have the cookie and peanut butter. With cheese on top.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Humming Birds

Last week I was at a home with a large orange tree for Village Harvest. My friend Pat pointed out that there was a humming bird nest on one of the branches. I really had to kick myself for not having my camera with me, cause from the ladder we could see the little chicks in the nest, little yellow beaks and all.

Then Pat told me this lovely story how she saved a humming bird chick in her own backyard. Apparently the nest fell apart after a rain storm, and one of the chicks fell out. She put the chick in a tiny Christmas basket and hang it next to the original nest. Luckily mom-bird fed both chicks till they flew the coop. Pat uploaded all the pictures of the chain of events here.


Thursday, April 08, 2010

The Pill War

Trinket has been very healthy all his life, so we never learned his pill habit -- as in, how difficult it is to make him take pills. We know he's a picky eater, even has to sniff test his water every morning, as if from day to day the filter might just change a bit, well I guess that could be true. When he was a baby I used to hand feed him kibbles, or give him table food when he refused his meals. He's our first born, what can I say.

Last week Dr. Larsen prescribed couple of meds for Trinket -- Enacard for the heart, twice a day, and Torbutrol for breathing, as needed. That's at least two meds a day. First we did fine with cheese, good Provolone cheese. Did that for four days until Trinket turned his nose at it -- too strong, I'm a little dog after all. We ran out and bought pill pockets, which worked magic for Bucky. Did that for another four days, until Trinket started spitting the little balled up pocket out, no like it, want real food, this is for dogs.

Trinket's Dad is a big guy at six foot four, I mean he's A LOT bigger than the little dog. When Trinket gets nasty about things like taking pills and I don't feel like fighting those sparkly little canines, we bring out the big gun. Trinket and Dad settled on a pill routine something like this:

1. Dad brings out a pack of deli meat and offer Trinket a little piece.
2. Trinket: Yum, turkey, good stuff. Can I have more?
3. Dad gives Trinket another piece.
4. More?
5. Dad quickly wraps the pill in a piece of turkey, before Trinket figures out what's going on.
6. Trinket happily eats it.

Stay tuned.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Little Dog with a Big Heart

Trinket turned 15 in January, that's pretty old. He still acts like a puppy for the most part, runs up and down the stairs, stands on his hind legs and begs at the table, chases away cats and squirrels in the back yard. He doesn't hear nor see very well any more, which just makes him a bit more reasonable.

In the last couple of years his breathing has been getting noisier, especially at night. Sometimes he hacks as if imitating a cat coughing up a hairball. We thought we should consider sending him to the circus. He doesn't like visiting the vet, and we let him be.

Last weekend Trinket started hacking on and off rather loudly, more frequently than before, and worse at night, much worse than anything we'd seen. We called the vet and she said it might have to do with his heart since she detected heart murmur before. We took him in right away. Dr. Larsen managed to get couple of X-rays of his chest without any drugs, just a little cat muzzle. (Did I mention Trinket doesn't like her? He really shows it, physically.) The X-rays show Trinket has enlarged heart and collapsed trachea, both problems that we had a sense that existed, but now aggravated by old age. We got medications to help his breathing.

It's been three days since we started the medications and so far so good. We are all getting some sleep. Trinket is rather liking the pills routine, which involves a piece of cheese and some scratches behind the ears. 

Keep your fingers and toes crossed Trinket will maintain his health and snuggle with us for many more days and weeks and months.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Green with Envy

A good looking pug looks good in anything, even a diaper. Bucky has been Mr. Leaky for a little while, slowly going from oh-no-I-can't-wait to Good-morning-Mom-you-look-mad-I-want-my-breakfast. I asked on the pug group on Ravelry for advice, and someone recommended belly band, and that someone handy on etsy would be able to make one for me (for Bucky actually).

It was quite easy to find 2Parises, and she even found some pug fabric to make two belly bands. Then when I got the package, she included this St. Patty one as a bonus. How sweet!

Bucky, His Royal Highness, is quite embarrassed with this whole belly band business. We only use it at night, when he’s too tired to say much.

What you looking at? Got something better to do?

Cookies, I think I see cookies. I'm getting a little foggy, but I think I see cookies.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Stitches West 2010

The prior year reviews:

2007 -- look somewhere in the middle
2008 -- that was a fun year with Ravelry new in the community, doing the passport thing and all
2009 -- haven't made anything from last year's loot, don't ask

This year I signed up to help an Indie Dyer from East Bay, Snicklefritz Yarns. Janelle is a scientist by day, and fiber artist (and long distance cyclist) by other parts of the day. She looked for booth help during Stitches on Ravelry, and offered to pay with yarn (!!!), so I gladly raised my hand. Hey, I got time, right?

I was so happy to see the inner working of Stitches Market. On Wednesday I went in to help Janelle set up the booth. It's my first time to see the vendors without all the gloss and makeup.

Webs was all boxes and empty shelves.

Brooks Farm, the only thing recognizable was the metal sign.

By the time I left the show floor Wednesday afternoon, Webs was in decent shape. Amazing how much work they had done in a few hours.

But this booth was all pretty and well protected by early afternoon.

I took Double Knitting with Colors by Karen Frisa on Friday afternoon. It's a very good challenging class, requires some thinking, not just "doing". As for shopping, Isager is new to US and first time to appear at Stitches West. Marianne Isager is from Denmark and has a few books published in English. Someone on Ravelry referred to the booth as "the beautiful booth". I was completely drawn to their Alpaca 2 yarn (50/50 alpaca and merino) during Thursday night's market preview, but I liked every color and couldn't decide what to do.

By the time I made it to their booth Sunday afternoon some of the colors were sold out. Oh well, I hope they come back next year. I said goodbye to the booth on my way out.

It's even more amazing how fast booths were taken apart and packed. This is Webs 45 minutes after market officially closed. The big sign came down about 30 seconds after I took the picture.

The ladies were stripped bare.

So was the guy.

Will they ride the forklift all the way home?

The loot:
-- Ellen’s 1/2 pint farm, Falkland Wool, color Purple Mountain Majesty. Ellen is my weakness. Once I make peace with that I'm fine collecting the yarns in every color and fiber.
-- 2 skeins Heather Prime Alpaca (total 1lb) in purple
-- 10 skeins Lambs Pride worsted (at $5 a piece!) in red (apparently I was on a red and purple kick)

And the best part, I shopped to my heart's content in the Snicklefritz booth. Couple of days work earned me this delicious lot:
-- 1 skein of sock yarn in Little Caymen Gnome (blue/green)
-- 1 skein of natural dyed cashmere/silk in New England Mussel Shell (pink). I tried to talk everybody into buying this yarn. It's simply heavenly.
-- 3 skeins of Bishop (100% blue-faced leicester), 1 of them in Blueberry Pie and 2 Purplelicious
-- 2 skeins of silk/merino in Lady Gnome (yellow/green)

Till next year.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

A Rare Treat

Bucky is almost 14 1/2 years old. When he was little he used to walk funny, almost like the back half of the body wanted to be parallel with the front. The vet said he'd out grow it, or it'd indicate something wrong with his spine. Well, he never did out grow the funny walk, just like the rest of him, always stays very much baby- or toddler-like. When he was ten the neck went out of wack and we have been carrying him up and down the stairs since. Last year the vet found severe arthritis in both hips. This has been a hard winter on his old body, the legs are getting more and more stiff, the walking space he covers getting less and less. One day last week he gave up walking and standing altogether. It took us some effort to convince him it's not time to give up yet.

So it was a rare treat the other day when I caught him barking in the back yard, telling the neighbor's kids off. Something he used to do every day, every minute if I let him, now I'm just happy he hears them (maybe), stands up (yay!) and talks (well).

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

A Perfectly Good Hat

Pattern: Scottish Tam on the cover of Vogue Knitting on the Go: Hats and Caps
Yarn: Brown Sheep Nature Spun sport brought at Golden Fleece almost four years ago
Needles: Size 5
Cast on: February 12, 2010
Cast off: February 27, 2010
Notes: This was my Ravelympics knitting -- the knitters on Ravelry give each other a challenge during Olympics. Participants would choose one or multiple "challenge", could be a new technique, or a project need to be finished, or a project related to the games, like my Chinese Red Vest in 2008. This time I decided to go with the winter theme and do some color knitting. This was planned to be a beret for myself, fair isle in two-handed knitting which I never attempted before. The knitting turned out to be fun and a bit challenging to make my hands learn something new, but the hat turned out a lot smaller, and not quite beret-like. It'll still keep someone's head warm.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Happy Birthday Henry!

Eleven years ago today, on another Monday morning, at 9:24am, my only child was born in Kaiser Santa Clara. I was 24 minutes into my maternity leave, and Bill missed his 9am meeting. Life has not been the same since.

Happy Birthday Henry!

This picture was from our gathering with other Feb99 families for the babies' first birthday. It's one of my favorite mother-son pictures.

This morning Henry found his mandatory acceptance letter from Hogwarts. The past weekend was our city's basketball tournament. Henry's team made it to the championship game, despite winning only two games during the season and came into the tournament as the last seed. We lost to the champion, but Henry played a great game, on Chinese New Year no less, scored, and was very happy.