YO! ZMK Knits!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

All This and Knitting Too!

Here is a Christmas present down: The Fetching gloves from Summer 2006 Knitty!

fetching 1

fetching 2

Pattern: See above link
Yarn: Nashua Handknits Creative Focus Worsted (75% Wool, 25% Alpaca), Color # CFW3686 Carolina Blue. I used a little less than half a 220 yard skein
Needles: Size 5 aluminum dpns. I do not recommend aluminum dpns for this pattern. The yarn is really slippery on them and it was a pain.

It took me approximately a week to make these. It's a Christmas present for one of the attorneys I work for -- she is always freezing in her office, so I hope she can wear these when she types. I've seen her wear this color successfully and have seen her wear fuzzy-looking things (like angora), so I don't think wool is a problem. Hopefully I'm right!

I'm already making my second set of these, for another Christmas present, using Rowan CashSoft. Look for a photo of them soon!

I am also thinking of using the cabled cuffs on a pair of mittens for myself, to match my coat. I got a new coat this year and am eager to match things to it.

I've also got some yarn pr0n:

yarn 1

yarn 2

yarn 3

This is the first installment of the Sock Club yarn from Mind's Eye Yarns. If you're not a member, you can't get it for at least a year. However, if you'd like some of Lucy's amazing hand-dyed sock yarn, she does have an etsy shop. She's a great person, so definitely check out her yarn!

Finally, I would like to give a progress report on Solvie. I have not received the toxioplasmosis test results yet, but she seems to be doing quite well on the antibiotic cocktail we've been giving her. She hates it, of course, and every day her struggles are stronger, and she no longer spends her days sleeping under the bed. She waits on the kitchen floor, probably for another mouse to come along for her to snack on. We think she got one on Friday, and horfed it down before we could figure out if she did or not. The next time I could see her, she was licking her lips. I don't know if she swallows them without chewing them or what, but she gets them down quicker than the snake does.

It's not like we're not feeding her. She has dry cat food out all day, and gets 1/2 pouch of Eukanuba twice a day:

solvie eating 4

solvie eating 3

She even got some Thanksgiving leftovers:

solvie eating 2

solvie eating

Yes, those are peas. She always ate them when she was a kitten, but isn't as into them as she used to be. I think she ate a couple along with the turkey, however.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Mouse Massacre!!!!


I just saw Solvie kill a small mouse near her food dish. I had to physically remove it from her mouth because she was trying to horf it back! Ewwww!!!!

The most recent blood test (which we are awaiting results on) was for toxioplasmosis, which I was told cats who eat mice often get. I didn't think she was eating mice, but now I think she may have been all along.

We've had a really wet year this year, which has probably been sending mice into our house (this is the first year I've seen 'em in here, and I've been here since early '03).

The good news is that Solvie has definitely perked up and doesn't seem sick right now. In fact, she's very very excited. . .

Zelia Just. . .

killed a mouse.

We suspected we had them. Our downstairs neighbor has had them in the past, and during the past couple of months, both kitties have been very interested in the closets and walls.

I just came upstairs to go on the computer, and saw a mouse carcass in the middle of the floor, with Zelia sitting nearby. I went downstairs to tell ZMrK (and to get a paper towel and plastic bag to clean it up), and when I came back upstairs, she was sitting triumphantly over it, as if to say, "See what I did?" I lavish praise upon her for protect our home from stinky mice.

I nearly took a picture of her sitting triumphantly over it, because it was pretty funny, except it would be a little bit gross (even though it wasn't a gory kill at all, thankfully).

What a good kitty!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

I give you -- the trailer for Blood Freak (warning: scenes of graphic, yet very fake-looking, violence):

Yes, it is a blood drinker with the head of a turkey.

I first saw this movie in high school. At one visit to the video store ZMrK used to work at, I recommended it to him (this was before our first date). I knew then, he would be mine forever.

Friday, November 17, 2006


Solvie may not be dying!!!!

She doesn't have FIP!!!!!

Of course, they don't know *what* she has, but this gives me hope!!!!!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

A few non-knitting related things. . .

1. IKEA is evil. I don't mean this in a good way. I believe that store is evil incarnate.

Case in point: I was looking at their website tonight, and every item I may have been interested in cannot be purchased over the 'net. You can only buy it in the store. Which means you have to go in, find what you are looking for, and be forced to go through every single department in the store like a frickin' zombie before you can get to the checkout, whereas you will have to wait in line with every other consumer zombie to get out of there. IKEA is not a quickie in-out store. You have to put aside half your frickin' day to go there, and while you're there, you might as well pick up a few more things to make the trip worth while, etc., etc.

See? Evil.

I tried to love them, being the lover of all things Svenska, but I have to draw the line at them. Gimme H&M (even though they are cronically understaffed and probably have the same idea -- keep 'em in here as long as possible, and they'll find more cheap stuff to buy).

2. Pee on the seat. Yes, I am obsessed. There is still a Princess Tinkle Tush at work, and I thought I knew who she was, but now I think I was wrong. I want to know a few things from my readers, though:

a. Do you hover or do you sit down on the seat? If you hover, why do you do it? I mean, really, it's your ass; it's not like you have to eat off the seat. Or off your ass. If someone else is eating off your ass, you may just want to shower first. I really think that, unless you have open sores on your butt, you're not going to catch anything from the seat. Unless someone has been wiping their parts on the seat, which I doubt. A wise man once said to me, "It takes a lot to fuck you (meaning: a person) up". And the stories about getting crabs from a public toilet? Bullshit. It's what your significant other says when s/he doesn't want you to know s/he's been screwing around on you.

b. If you hover, do you at least wipe the seat afterwards? Because, if you don't, that's just disgusting and rude. If there is anything to be afraid of from a public toilet seat, it's because of people like you. Don't you realize that? Can't you just put a layer of t.p. on the seat and sit on THAT instead? Or carry a can of Lysol with you, spray and wipe?

I'm really getting tired of the germ-o-phobia in this country (coupled with the extreme opposite - people who don't care and cough out in the open, or snorf all their phlegm into the back of their throat). I wash my hands after I use the bathroom, with soap, rubbing my hands together under the running water through a verse of "Happy Birthday", k? I sneeze into my armpit or arm crook to avoid getting germs on my hands. I refuse, however, to hover and piss all over a toilet seat because I'm afraid of germs, and I refuse to panic over those emails that go around saying, "Don't put your purse on the table! It has more germs on it than your shoes!"

I remember reading a story about a new mom who would go crazy washing her baby's pacifier every time he dropped it. Once she was washing it, and heard a noise behind her. The baby was sucking on the wheels to his stroller.

He lived.

You know why?

Because it takes a lot to fuck you up.

Oh, and to those people who feel compelled to wipe poop on the toilet walls, or throw unwrapped tampons on the floor: seek professional help, please.

Good night!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

A Little Bit Better Today

Even tho' I think I'm getting sick (more on that later).

Yesterday's post was so gloom and doom, but my attitude has changed overnight. Instead of making myself miserable over that what is inevitable, and what I cannot change, I decided to treat every day with Solvie as a gift. She is still eating everything we put in front of her, and then looking for more, and as long as she is eating she isn't in immediate danger. ZMrK's co-worker asked if we had tried giving her some catnip (think: medical marijuana for cats). We tried it last night. She has a shoebox lid that she always "takes" her catnip in -- it's got lots of scratchmarks with old catnip embedded in them. I took out the box lid and the bag of catnip, and out she comes from under the bed, looking very very interested. She didn't play at all, or scratch, or roll around like the used to do, but she sat in the lid while I gave her a nice bit of grooming (she purred the whole time). While we ate dinner, she lay down in the lid and eventually took a little nap.

I'm hoping for many more days like this.

As far as the "infectious" part of FIP goes -- yes, there is a possibility that Zelia can get it. More cats get hit with the coronavirus that causes FIP and recover than get hit with FIP -- in fact, FIP only infects a small percentage of the cat population (if I read the pamphlet about it correctly). That being said, "older" cats (over 10) have been found to be a little more susceptible (as well as cats under the age of 2 and cats with weakened immune systems). Zelia is 15, and recently got a very clean bill of health from the vet (complete with senior blood work and everything). Please keep your fingers crossed that I don't end up with TWO teminally ill kitties.

Now on to me (warning: major grumpiness ahead) . . . I think I'm getting a cold. I went to a fire warden meeting for my building today and got one of the last seats in there. It was directly under an A/C vent, blowing cold air down the back of my neck. The meeting lasted about an hour. It took me about as long to get warmed up again. Then I got on the train tonight -- crowded, as always, and I was one of the last people on so I had to stand in the doorway*. The A/C was on, blowing on me. Once the train emptied out a bit and I could get in out of the doorway, it wasn't half as bad.

I hope you understand this. I was assaulted by air conditioning twice in one day. It is November, it's Boston, and it's currently 53 degrees F and raining. Who the fuck ordered the A/C on anyway?

So, maybe there will be a day in my near future that I will be at home, knitting and hanging out with my cats. If it turns out to be tomorrow, and you are one fire warden short for your drill -- well, next time don't blast the A/C, fuckface.

*Oh, and to the bitch who got on at Copley: I stepped out of the train to let people getting out of the train get by, not to make way for you to push past me to get your precious ass on the train. I was courteous. Maybe you should learn how to be.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Life Has Been Pissing in my Corn Flakes

Or, at least it feels that way.

Heard from the vet again. Not lymphoma. FIP. Feline Infectious Peritonitis. They emailed ZMrK a 41-page, very extensive, non-layman's terms document about FIP, but you can read the 4-pager that Cornell University has here.

It sucks.

I might be a little "out of it" for a while. Please forgive me if I'm not keeping in touch lately.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Zelia loves Solvie

Zelia comforting Solvie.


I finally found out how to link my flickr photos to my blog, thanks to adriennec on the knittyboard. THANK YOU!!

Finished Socks and Sad Kitty News

I finished my neon colored welt fantastic socks last night!!!

Yarn: Regia Crazy Color Stretch Yarn (a little over one skein)

Needles: size 3 Clover bamboo

Pattern: "Welt Fantastic" from Knitting Sensational Socks

Started: October 22, 2006

Finished: November 3, 2006

I can't believe how fast I knit these! It didn't even take me two weeks! Of course, it is getting chilly out, and I'm spending more times indoors. Plus, they were so much fun to make that I didn't want to do much else.

I don't think they are going to be the warmest socks in the world, but they sure will be fun to wear.

Solvie got in on the picture as well.

This brings me to the sad part of my post. The vets are 95% certain that Solvie has lymphoma. I noticed over a month ago that she had lost a lot of weight, and I could feel her bones through her fur. We took her to our vet, who put her on Clavamox for a couple of weeks with a follow-up appointment scheduled. We took her there on Thursday, 10/26, and discovered that she had lost 3 more ounces, putting her at less than 5 and a half pounds. She's normally around a 7 lb kitty. Our doc took some blood from her, which showed some abnormality of the liver. She recommended an abdominal ultrasound. We made an appointment for early morning on Wednesday, November 1, and ZMrK -- bless him -- took the time off work to take her there. The ultrasound showed enlargement of the liver and spleen, and that's when the doc told ZMrK that it was most likely lymphoma, or a virus that mimics lymphoma. They scheduled a biopsy for the next morning.

Solvie was okay for the blood-drawing part of the biopsy, but when they went to give her anesthesia, she FLIPPED out and started attacking the vet and his staff, biting and scratching. Somehow during this she lost one of her teeth. She must have just decided that three vet visits in one week was quite enough, thank you, and please stop sticking needles into her.

We haven't received the results of the biopsy yet. The treatment required will depend upon the type of lymphoma she has; if it is small-cell lymphoma, we can treat her at home with medication; if it is large-cell lymphoma, treatment will include chemotherapy. Based upon what happened this past Thursday during her biopsy, I really hope that we can treat her at home, with as little trips to the vet as possible. She has always been a bit of a high-strung cat; she was never feral, but her kittenhood was mostly spent in a house with several other cats and very little hugs and pets. She never got used to being held; in fact, she hates it and has made a fuss at the vet office before. She's not a lap cat, but she loves to be petted and will come up to "make bread" on us when we are in bed.

I'm really hoping to make her life as comfortable as possible, no matter how much longer it is. She has been given as much food as she will eat (she loves the fishy canned food from Iams), and has been sleeping the past few days under my side of the bed. We put her on top of the bed today when we were watching TV and she stayed there, especially as long as ZMrK was petting her. She loves her daddy.

I'm trying hard not to get too freaked out about this. She's been in pretty good spirits (for her) the past couple of days, even prancing about the house a few times. It does make me sad to compare old pics of her when she looked healthy like this:

blorange bitch 3

to see how old she looks now:

Yes, that is a great picture, but she really looks like a senior kitty, and she's only 7 years old.

Please keep Solvie (and ZMrK, Zelia, Sunny and me) in your thoughts. Thank you.

Now, let's lighten the mood with some yarn pr0n:
4yarn porn

3yarn porn

2yarn porn

1yarn porn

This is some of the yarn I purchased at Rhinebeck. I got these from Ellen's Half-Pint Farm. I think I will make very basic, ribbed-and-stockinette socks from the brown, peach and teal yarn, and something more fancy and lacy from the peach yarn. I have a feeling that I will love working with this.

There is also some incredibly good buys on double-knit cashmere on Colourmart UK's ebay page. I have never used their yarn, but have heard great things on the knittyboard about them.