Friday, February 18, 2011

Pssst ...

Check out a new blog I'm contributing to: Stellar Four, wherein we explore the girlie side of science, science fiction and fantasy. It's a group of smart, savvy, funny women writers. Give us a look!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Alternative madness this March

To say I'm not a sports fan is an understatement, so March Madness holds no particular magic for me. But I'm thoroughly enjoying some of the alternate brackets happening around the web right now.

First, we have DA BWAHA, a bracket match between some of the most popular recent romance novels from varying subgenres, including contemporary, historical and young adult. Original brackets have already been filled out and submitted, but the second chance bracket happens tomorrow. And you can always cast your vote!

Next is another literary cage match -- this one to the death. Dum dum dummmmmmm. Suvudu is pitting well-known sci fi/fantasy characters against each other in a death match. My man Harry Dresden went down in the first round to Conan the Barbarian, but my other man Jaime Lannister is still a-fightin'.

Finally, cake vs. pie. And what kind of cake? What's your pie preference? Voting has never been more delicious.

Friday, March 05, 2010

I thought the yarn would be safe in the closet. I see now that I was wrong. Well played, cats.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Goodies from Tennessee

As part of Dish Rag Tag, my team's leader, Toni, set up a side competition in which she gave away the most cunning little homemade bag ever. And I won! Check out the coolness:

  • An adorable bag with the most clever hand-made tassels. I love the fabric, which shows all the states. Very retro chic!
  • Tapestry needles for weaving in those pesky yarn tails. I'm always dropping and losing these needles, so this is terrific.
  • A knitting gauge. How did Toni know I always need help figuring out my gauge?
  • Two stitch holders, which I don't have among my knitting materials, so I'm especially glad to see these!
  • Delicious tea in some of my favorite flavors. (Mmmmmmm, pomegranate.)

Here's an inside look at the cunning little bag:

I'm delighted by the bounty and am very grateful to Toni for her thoughtfulness, and for making DRT 2009 so much fun!

Death hats

Last Thursday at midnight, Hat Wars began.

My task was to knit a hat and send it to my target to "kill" her. At the same time, my assassin was knitting a hat to "kill" me with. It's a vicious, vicious cycle of hats, knitting needles and death.

The patterns actually went live at 11 p.m. Thursday my time, and I was absolutely committed to getting that hat in the mail on Friday. I scanned the patterns and picked the one that looked challenging but not impossible, with a cable pattern to keep me on my toes. I cast on that night and knit the ribbed (resisting a "for her pleasure" joke ... resisting ... resisting ... oh, I guess I already made it, didn't it?) brim for as long as I could stay awake.

I woke up groggy the next morning and kept knitting. And knitting. And knitting. At about 2 p.m., it stopped being fun and turned into a chore. I had a house to clean. I had papers to grade, PowerPoints to create, lessons to plan. I had cats to pet! But no. I ignored the stack of dishes in the sink and the pile of work on the table. I removed the cats from my lap as they each jumped up to see what had me so engrossed. I was. Going. To get. This. Done.

And I did! With 20 minutes before the post office closed, I raced out of the house to mail a gorgeous, forest green hat to my target. Actually finishing it and putting it in them mail perked up my mood considerably.

And I killed my target, whose hat arrived on Monday. Of course, my death hat arrived on Tuesday. So my target's dead, I'm dead, and my assassin is dead, too, killed by yet another assassin knitter.

Never, ever cross a knitter.

Dish rag has been tagged

Last week was a busy, busy week of knitting. First up was Wednesday, when the Dish Rag Tag Chronicles of Yarnia box arrived with my mail at about 9 a.m. I happened to be walking by my front windows, and I saw my mail carrier slide that friendly white box into my the mail box. I zipped out to get it, and ripped into it (not literally) to see what I could see.

In it was a great-looking aqua dish cloth courtesy of Alaina, along with stitch markers and a cute little Post It note pad. Fun stuff! I also found the cheery yellow yarn I was going to use to make my own dish cloth to send on to Pam.

And four hours later , minus an hour to take my cat Thor (not pictured; that one is Gygax) to the vet, I finished and dashed to the post office to send it on the next leg of its journey.

Let's hear it for a one-day turn-around!

Thursday, September 03, 2009


When you tell your server at Jonah's Seafood House that you're celebrating a birthday, and she responds by saying she'll bring out a complimentary piece of chocolate cake, she is not messing around.

Seriously, this picture downplays the massive-osity of this slice of cake.

"Yum" is an understatement.


I knit.

I just want to get that out there. I started on a whim after seeing how much my sister enjoyed crocheting. And she picked up this hobby on a whim after my husband and I bought her a "Learn to Crochet" DVD that we found in a clearance aisle. It was supposed to be a joke, but she loved it. Anyway. It looked like such fun that I took a knitting class. I'm not great, but I'm OK, and I really enjoy it.

Not long ago, I joined Ravelry, which has amazing forums that have ironically consumed the free time that I used to use to knit. However, the website alerted me to the delightful knitting competition Dish Rag Tag. Nine other knitters and I are on a team competing against others in a relay race across the country to knit a dish rag and send the dish rag along with a fresh skein of yarn to the next participant.

I believe I'm about two people away from receiving the baton -- er, box -- in the mail and completing my leg.

Making knitting competitive? Brilliant!

Our group is named Chronicles of Yarnia. We are in it to win it. Fear us.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Shut your cake hole, sexist vitamins!

Thank you, One a Day Teen Advantage vitamins. You advertise the benefits of healthy muscles for him and healthy skin for her. Because men are strong, and women are pretty. Can you imagine what would happen if a teenage boy had healthy skin? Or -- Get this! Ha! -- if a teen girl had muscles? What a crazy world that would be! Thanks, One a Day Teen Advantage vitamins, for keeping the world safe for stereotypical gender norms!

Oh, One a Day Teen Advantage vitamins, how I loathe thee!

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

It's like the Sahara

Ugh. I've already failed on one resolution. My plants would be better off if I left them in the desert, I swear. This includes my husband's family's heirloom Christmas cactus from the Mother Country. Why they entrusted it to us, I'll never know. I keep hoping some long-lost last will and testament will be discovered and we'll learn that the cactus was supposed to go to Great Aunt Tilly with her green thumb and sunny verandas, not the Planticide household. Until then, it stays with us, since we were the ones who unofficially inherited it and we can't find any other family members who want to take on the responsibility. Believe me. We've tried.