The Life and Times of Florence Knitingale

Friday, November 10, 2006

Oh, look--animals in twos.....

We’ve gotten a bit of rain up here in Washington lately… may have heard. Sheets of rain, buckets of rain, drizzles of rain, rain with wind, rain with big, splatty drops, rain, rain, RAIN. There are some people nearby whom I know have sheep and I haven’t driven by there recently, but I wonder if they’ve felted……..all the rain, you know. I guess they’d probably need a bit of agitation. Maybe I’ll go over and tell sheep jokes, try to agitate them a bit…see if they felt.

Not that I’m in a seriously goofy mood, or anything. It’s just that there’s no school today and I did all my errands this morning—exciting stuff like torture (they call it physical therapy, but they’re not fooling me), getting the oil changed in the car, picking up some more shave gel (because Mr. K apparently doesn’t want to go to bed with Sasquatch—go figure). Truly, my life is a glittering whirl. So, since this morning, I’ve had the whole afternoon to knit and be and cuddle kitties which is very wonderful but it’s hard, in this kind of endless spate of ark-building weather, not to feel a bit housebound and not to let the mind roam. Like to felted sheep. And to other, equally whacko things, like:

Would it be bad to have Mr. K hide M&M’s all over the house in the hope that it might make housework seem more appealing? ‘Cause, really, a better woman than I would have used the time today to scrub out the window tracks with a toothbrush or something. Martha would have.

Well….no. Martha would have paid someone to do it. But they’d have been squeaky clean window tracks. Actually, I’ve heard she isn’t the most pleasant person to work with…so, she should probably take steps to make sure it isn’t her toothbrush winnowing the nastiness out of the window tracks, regardless of which flunky she gets to do it.

Kind of makes you wonder what kind of “home and living” sort of magazine I might come up with, doesn’t it? (Just nod and smile…I’ll never know if you’re secretly balancing your checkbook and saying “mm-hmm” a lot.) Here are some working ideas for articles:

“How sliding across the hardwood in your socks can lengthen the time between moppings!” (don’t panic—I wouldn’t do it in handknit socks! But, if Mr. K ever asks you if you know why his sweatsocks wear out so fast, you never heard a thing.)
“Take your floor sweepings to your carpet store to match—and never have to vacuum again!”
“Why waste time washing windows? You know what the yard looks like, don’t you?”
“Dust is nature’s way of saying that everything looks better in gray.”
“Call your dryer ‘the cylindrical bureau’ and you’ll wonder why you ever folded anything!”
“If they can make wrinkles stylish in broomstick skirts, why can’t we also have broomstick shirts, broomstick t-shirts, broom-stick blouses—the possibilities are limited only by your own personal laziness.” (An aside here—I once knew a woman who ironed sheets, towels, underwear, and pajamas. And she was a working mother with two kids. I haven’t seen her in years, but I often wonder if she started raiding the goodwill box for things to iron once the kids left for college. And how they escaped being ironed.)
“Carpet lint or cheap insulation? The answer is all in your point of view.”
“How to train your pets to get on the bed the minute you get out, and assume such adorable poses that no one could possibly to expect you to disturb them by making the bed.” (tricky, but doable. Just deny it if your spouse starts complaining of the bed smelling vaguely of cat treats.)
“Wrinkled clothes can make your face look less wrinkled by comparison. It’s an instant face-lift!”
“Self-cleaning toilets—and invention we need RIGHT NOW.”
“Clean closets? Why? Are you seating guests in there?”
“They say that an organized mind is an efficient mind. I say that an organized mind is one that should be taught to knit.”

Yeah, I don’t think Martha will be knocking down my door any time soon.

In addition to all of this profound thought, I am nearly done with the first sleeve of Samus. I may have made it too long, in which case you’ll know because you’ll hear my screaming all around the world and quite possibly all the way up in the space station. It’s a set-in sleeve, of course, so shortening it will require frogging all the way back to before the shaping of the sleeve cap. Which would result in yet another article: “How to grow your arms quickly in case of knitting emergency.” I’m crossing my fingers. It looks long…but it might be okay. And if it isn’t….well, my hands do get cold really easily…..

I also caved and started knitting the braided scarf out of suri merino. If you’ve seen the pattern (and happen to have special, "anti blur" vision) you’ll notice I changed it a bit (largely because I am apparently constitutionally unable to just knit or bake anything the way I’m told to). Instead of a garter stitch end, I used a toe-up-sock-type cast on so that the thing would be joined and not an open tube; then I could work it in stockinette, which I like better. I’ll probably kirchner the other end.

It’s so soft I can hardly stand it. The knitting will be somewhat slowed by the near constant need to pet it. I had to pick up some size 6 DPN’s for it and Joann’s was right next door to the Jiffy Lube…..and a bunch of their yarns were on sale…..and…well, clearly I cannot be blamed for this:

Weird, isn’t it? It’s mostly wool with a bit of nylon for softness. It’s much chunkier than I would normally ever knit with…but I love the colors. Scarf? Vest? Really chunky shawl? Little booties for the cats so they can sweep and polish as they walk around the house? Notice poor Ed here, hiding his feet from the madwoman:

Or, hey—I could make them full-body sweaters and then give them catnip and they’d clean the floor twice as fast by rolling around on it….

See what I mean? It really needs to stop raining. I need so little encouragement towards full-on whackjob.


  • At 4:41 PM, Anonymous Marianne said…

    Now, now,.....Sweaters AND booties for the Kittengales.
    Felted sheep? Does it rain really hot water there? Then you would definitely need to agitate could work!
    If I hear you screaming...I'll understand, because really, you will need to frog back, won't you.....
    I've actually heard of people ironing sheets, (good grief) but ironed towels? underwear? pj's????? doesn't that like....defeat the purpose??? That poor misguided woman. All that time she could've been knitting...

  • At 6:15 PM, Blogger Peg said…

    Ms. K - you always make me smile. I can see that the rain is getting to you - felted sheep indeed!

  • At 6:29 AM, Anonymous angie cox said…

    Oh think how tight they'll feel inside ! I learnt to stand on cut up sweatshirts and skate across the kitchen floor after my back got very stiff. I think I must get Jeff to hide Maltesers around the house.....those are balls of honycombe covered in chocolate that are a British tradition and joke you eat them like do you bite the chocolate off bit by bit, eat them whole ,lick them etc . My father made me an addict at 2 years old...good job it wasn't the Cider he drank !!!

  • At 10:28 AM, Blogger Lynn said…

    Now if we could only get it to rain down Good Men, there are a lot of good women here in TX who are looking for one. No shortage of the bad 'uns.

    I roared at the image of the kitties catnipping your floors.

    I wonder what I could dip socks in to get teenagers to be more useful around the house. I'd be richer'n Martha if I figured that one out!

  • At 7:27 PM, Anonymous Jill said…

    I think we should wrap swiffer cloth thingys around the cats and just solve the problem where it starts. Or even better, sew(maybe I'm being to extravagant) little tubes with legs holes in them!
    Brilliant idea, I'll make millions!

  • At 11:18 AM, Blogger Jo said…

    Love the idea of agitating the sheep so the felting work could be done at an early stage of production. Good thinking, Knitingale.

    And I find that damp rubber-soled shoes (damp from chasing into the garden after small misbehaving dogs) work just fine for clearing up dog hair from the carpet (would probably work just as well for cat hair) and eliminate the need, not only for vacuum cleaners, but also for sessions at the gym.

    Celtic Memory Yarns


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