Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Happy Halloween!

This is me (on the left) as Dr John D Zoidberg and Adam as Zapp Brannigan for Halloween. I was very proud of how our costumes came out this year!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

A Pillow for Marge Simpson

Check out my "Dome Sweet Dome" / "Nome Sweet Nome" pillow, which I finished today. Fans of the Simpsons movie will recognize these homilies as things Marge Simpson was knitting when they enclosed Springfield in a dome to protect the environment and when they moved to Nome, Alaska, respectively. Adam thought it would be cool if I knitted these things so I did, and then made them into a pillow. I think it came out GREAT.

Side view:

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

We Are Not Amused.

I came home tonight and as I came in the front door I smelled cat pee. At first I tried to tell myself I was imagining it, but as I came and went through the front room I kept smelling it more and more strongly. Finally I began looking for it, and I discovered the smell was emanating from behind the new TV!!! The little jerks! As soon as we got the TV I saw Lily nosing around behind there, and Dusty too, and I yelled at them at first not to go back there, but Adam was like, hey, let them explore. The upshot of their "exploring" was, like, a whole CUP of pee back there, seeping into the wood floor and basically permeating the whole corner. I had to clean it up, of course, since I'm here and Adam is out of town, which was THAT fun, I can tell you. I used pine sol, which I hope was a good choice, it's for wood floors. Then I googled "smells cats hate" and the concensus was "citrus" so I sprinkled citrus smell absorber around there and some powdered lemon juice product for good measure.

And another thing: Why does it always seem like when something from the cats that needs to be cleaned up appears, Adam is nowhere to be found? In the past 2 weeks I've picked up four piles of poo outside the new litter box, which at least one of them does not seem to grok how to use for poo; two big piles of vomited dry food (Dusty basically is bulimic, and eats until he throws up); and now this. It's a good thing I love these cats, AND my man, because boy, this is trying my patience here.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Zoidberg is done!

I ended up taking the oil paint off the sunglass lenses because it wasn't drying at all. I couldn't even find turpentine at the local AC Moore (I hate that place). Fortunately soap and water is the universal solvent and will dissolve oil paint; I washed it off easily. I cut out two little circles of tape for the pupils and sprayed two light coats of spray paint and it came out MUCH better.

Adam was teasing me about taking pictures of all my projects so I took his picture too. That big rectangle there, btw, is a small corner of his giant new TV. He's so proud!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Zoidberg is close! Rhineberg is tomorrow!

Here you see me modeling the mask; the knitting part is complete and I just have to add the eyes. I got some big sunglasses at Target and tonight I popped out the lenses and painted them white, with a big (unpainted) black dot in the middle to see out of. UNFORTUNATELY I was so excited to paint them that I didn't pay attention to what kind of paint it was until I had already begun painting - using oil paint. Which means it will take days to dry. Especially since it's humid here right now. Argh. Dumb mistake. I was going to say "rookie" mistake, but even a rookie would get that right, because they would be more careful than somebody who is arrogant because she has tons of art supplies lying around from years and years of various projects. GRRRRRR.

I also got, and you can see in the photo, the teal colored turtleneck shirt that is part of the costume. I also ordered a pair of scrubs pants, and a white doctor's coat with the name embroidered on it, which I hope will arrive VERY soon as the party we are going to that all this is for, is Friday.

Tomorrow I am going up to Rhinebeck! I am very excited. I've never been to a fiber festival before and it should be a lot of fun. I expect to spend lots of money and come home with tons of stuff. I wouldn't be surprised if I came home with a spinning wheel. Okay, maybe not. But I do hope to find lots of cool things and maybe even meet some people and EVEN see some people I know! I wouldn't be surprised to see one or two people I have met before. I wonder if Joelle from Purl will be there? I know Debbie won't be there because I asked her and she said she had a wedding to go to. But I do know a few other knitters in the world. Monica from Stix-n-Stitches will be there I think. And Adam might even come up with me...

I still have to do the two small tweaks to Adam's Zapp Brannigan costume. Maybe I'll get out the sewing machine tonight, do that, and finish the two UFOs that need to be sewed before they can be really done. I have to see after I finish eating my dinner. Adam's in the city with people from work for a birthday thing; he said he "had to make an appearance" before he could come home. Luckily for me he has on his suit, which means he has on his dress shoes, which means his feet hurt, which will spur him to come home at a decent hour. :)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Papa's Got a Brand-New Bag

Adam bought us a huge new TV and it's getting delivered today. He's about to plotz, he's so excited. By the time I get home it will most likely be set up in all its 57" glory. Combined with the super surround sound system he also has set up there, we can basically get movie theater quality viewing at home now. Wowie!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Henry Bear

I made this in a few hours - not a particularly difficult pattern, though creative and cute. I am considering giving it to a coworker whose wife just had a baby, although I've only worked there six weeks or so, and don't want him to think I'm weird. So I might not give it to him. But I probably will. What the hell. It's a tiny little goofy stuffed bear. And it's cute. And it's not pink!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Weed Farms

We went up to Marlboro, NY to Weed Farms and picked apples and other produce today. I've never done this, just always meant to, so I was pretty excited. When we turned the corner to the place and saw all the other city slickers already parked in two full parking lots, I wanted to turn around and go home, but since we'd already driven all that way, we stayed. It was lovely.

A gorgeous day in a gorgeous setting. We picked a large plastic bag of apples of various kinds.

We also got a bunch of peppers of various kinds, including some strange black ones. Anybody know what these are?

Lots of activity lately

Zoidberg mask: I ran out of yarn and had to order more. I'm only up to the top of the forehead (my "five-head" as my brother-in-law likes to call the family cranium) and I still have to make the hanging tendrily things on his mouth. That yarn better hurry up and arrive soon. I'm sure it'll get here well before Halloween. I was in a quandary about what to do about the eyes, big white globes (like all the characters on Futurama) but Adam came up with a great idea - take the lenses out of a pair of big sunglasses and paint them white, all but a round spot in the middle (to see out of). So I got some at Target and that's the plan. I'm not sure how well they will attach but I have some strong fabric glue, and I hope that will last at least long enough for the party we are going to.

Futurama, part 2 - Adam's costume: Adam decided he wanted to go as Zapp Brannigan, a Captain Kirk take-off who wears a tight red velour, well, minidress, basically that ends at the bottom of his ass. This meant me sewing the thing for him, which I was totally up for doing. I had all the stuff for it - the velour, the gold lame, the zipper, the interfacing, the NEW SEWING MACHINE:

... and as soon as I used up all the yarn I had for Zoidberg and was thus at a stopping point on that project I broke out the Zapp materials. I had to read the sewing machine user's manual just to start work on this, because I had yet to use it since I bought it. I was a little afraid of it, to tell the truth. So I carefully read all the stuff about the various electronic parts of it and how to make a bobbin and how to thread the machine, and cautiously at first (then enthusiastically) worked my way through the Zapp costume. I love the machine! It's wonderful. It's really high quality. It feels nimble and fleet, compared to the old 1960s machine of my mom's that I've depended on all these years. Because I was working on velour (kind of a pain due to the nap) I basted most of the seams but was able to relax when I sewed them on the machine. I still fucked up the zipper, because I didn't feel like basting it really carefully, and I put it in a bit crooked.

Adam said he didn't care - it's just a Halloween costume, for one night's wear only - so I didn't pull it out and fix it. But hey, live and learn.

He tried it on and it's really large on him, so I am going to do a couple of quick fixes to make it more fitted. Here's the nearly finished product:

Gourd help us: I now officially (according to Adam) have too many pumpkins, gourds, and autumn flora. Or at least (according to me) I have enough. I have two huge pumpkins for carving and five sugar pumpkins for pies. Those keep well so I can put them in the basement and we can use them over the fall/winter. I got a white pumpkin and a very cool greenish-red one, six or seven gourds of gnarly shapes, and three little white pumpkins. Not to mention the single pumpkin we grew, plus one of the two spaghetti squash we grew (we ate the other one and will probably eat the other one tonight), plus ten spaghetti squash I got at the store to keep in the basement to last us through the fall/winter as well. This is what happens when you move out to the suburbs and have a basement for the first time in 22 years.

Today we are going apple picking! I haven't ever done this. I'm not sure how long I will last out there; it's chilly! I'm excited though. Plus we are going up to a farm in New York State, about an hour or more north of us, which means we will see some lovely fall foliage. Another thing I've meant to do forever and never gotten around to doing.

We are going to carve the pumpkins tonight, I hope, and bake the seeds as we did when we made pies. Those seeds are righteous! We scarfed down the last batch in a hurry. We might also make a pumpkin pie or an apple pie. And have some more spaghetti squash with the last of the homemade spaghetti sauce we made using our homegrown tomatoes and peppers...

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Halloween prep progress report

Decorating the outside of the house: I put up a vulture looking down from its perch on the light and also draped a couple of spider webs across the bricks on either side of the door. It's subtle and therefore underwhelming. I have to do more and I feel sort of lame so far.

My Zoidberg costume: I'm up to my eyebrows - literally - with the mask, but now I am afraid I will run out of yarn before it's done. Also, Adam asked me last night how I planned to put it on, questioning whether it'll fit over my head! And it might not, so I might have to sew in a zipper...

Carved pumpkins: None so far. We did make a pumpkin pie over the weekend and it was the best I've ever tasted. Not counting my mom's pumpkin chiffon pie, which is in a class by itself. We also baked the seeds with salt, curry, and paprika, and they were phe.nom.eh.nal.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Zoidberg and other Halloween stuff

Here's the progress so far on the Zoidberg mask:

I'm knitting this from the bottom up - enough around the collar to lie under a nehru collared shirt - and what you see in the center of the picture here is the mouth opening. I'll come back and pick up stitches above the mouth to make the four tube thingies he has above his mouth. I have no idea what they are called.

On another note, here's a creepy dude parked in my parking lot near work:

Heh heh heh.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Happy Birthday to Adam!

My lovely man, happy birthday! You're my favorite, my one and only.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

My parents are coming for a visit

Fortunately the cleaning ladies came yesterday, so the place is clean. I asked Adam to help me try to keep it that way for just two days. Even so I have a lot of straightening up to do this evening if it is going to look as nice as I want it to for them.

I feel bad that the timing worked out the way it did: They are coming over to stay with my bro's kids this weekend and the original plan was for them to come stay with us on Monday night. But that is Adam's bday, and he wanted to spend that with me alone. So I had to call my mom and sort of un-invite them for Monday, which was less than ideal. My mom was totally cool about it but I still felt bad. And then it was hard to find any other time when it would work for them to come.

So they are coming on Thursday night, seeing my place, then we are going to have a quick dinner at a local restaurant. But then, unfortunately, they have to get back in the car and drive another hour to get to my bro's.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Welcome to the mobile age

I posted this using my "crackberry" and the post-by-email system that Blogger makes available. It's not the most convenient of methods to type into a mobile keyboard, but might come in handy when posting using a web browser isn't an option.