Books Read in 2019

151. *The Lady’s Secret, Chambers, Joanna
150. *Gentleman Wolf, Chambers, Joanna
148. *Henley Manor, Osborn, Jaclyn
147. *Smoke and Mirrors, St. Clair, Vesper
146. *Black and Blue, St. Clair, Vesper
145. *The Mysterious and Amazing Blue Billings, Morton, Lily
144. *Accepting the Lance, Lee, Sharon and Miller, Steve
143. *Enemies Like You, Chambers, Joanna and Martin, Annika
142. *The Unwritten (graphic novel), Carey, Mike and Gross, Peter
141. *Still Waters, Gabriel, Alex
140. *Nightmare Magazine, Issue 82, (July 2019), Adams, John J. ed.,
139. *Wyrd Sisters, Pratchett, Terry
138. *The Dark Days Club, Goodman, Alison
137. *The Scottish Prisoner, Gabaldon, Diana
136. *Seven Stones to Stand or Fall, Gabaldon, Diana
135. *Wickedly Dangerous, Blake, Deborah
134. *Seonag and the Seawolves, MacGriogar, M. Evan (short story)
133. *Lord John and the Plague of Zombies, Gabaldon, Diana
132. *Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade, Gabaldon, Diana
131. *Lord John and the Custom of the Army, Gabaldon, Diana
130. *Lord John and the Hand of Devils, Gabaldon, Diana
129. *Lord John and the Private Matter, Gabaldon, Diana
128. *Wolfsong, Klune, T. J.
127. *Unnatural Issue, Lackey, Mercedes
126. *Reserved for the Cat, Lackey, Mercedes
125. *The Wizard of London, Lackey, Mercedes
124. *Phoenix and Ashes, Lackey, Mercedes
123. *The Gates of Sleep, Lackey, Mercedes
122. *The Fire Rose, Lackey, Mercedes
121. *Reticence, Carriger, Gail
120. *Competence, Carriger, Gail (re-read)
119. *Imprudence, Carriger, Gail (re-read)
118. *Prudence, Carriger, Gail (re-read)
117. *Poison or Protect, Carriger, Gail (re-read)
116. *Mrs. O’Leary’s Boarding House: Aliens Only, Halsey, W. F.
115. *The Color of Magic, Pratchett, Terry (re-read)
114. Coraline, Gaiman, Neil (reread)
113. Northwest Smith, Moore, C. L.
112. Transcription, Atkinson, Kate
111. *Hither, Page, Sebastian, Cat
110. The Fifth Gender, Carriger, G. L.
109. The Wild Wood, de Lint, Charles (re-read)
108. Tales From The Inner City, Tan, Shawn
107. Good Omens, Pratchett, Terry and Gaiman, Neil (re-read)
106. *The Lightning Struck Heart, Klune, T. J.
105. *Today I Am Carey, Shoemaker, Martin L.
104. *The Corinthian, Heyer, Georgette
103. *Wanted, A Gentleman, Charles, K. J.
102. Tales From Outer Suburbia, Tan, Shaun
101. *The Man With Two Left Feet And Other Stories, Wodehouse, P. G.
100. The Arrival, Tan, Shaun (graphic novel)
99. *Hell or High Water, Cochet, Charlie
98. *Manners and Mutiny, Carriger, Gail
97. *Waistcoats and Weaponry, Carriger, Gail
96. *Curtsies and Conspiracies, Carriger, Gail
95. *Salt Magic, Skin Magic, Welch, Lee
94. *Enemies with Benefits, Martin, Annika and Chambers, Joanna
93. *Lark and Wren, Lackey, Mercedes
92. *Tribute Act, Chambers, Joanna
91. *Brat Farrar, Tey, Josephine
90. Fortune’s Favor, Lee, Sharon and Miller, Steve (novella)
89. *The Soldier’s Scoundrel, Sebastian, Cat
88. *The Lawrence Browne Affair, Sebastian, Cat
87. *The Ruin of a Rake, Sebastian, Cat
86. Shout of Honor, Lee, Sharon and Miller, Steve (novella)
85. The Little Paris Bookshop, George, Nina
84. *Brilliant Devices, Adina, Shelly
83. *Magnificent Devices, Adina, Shelly
82. *Her Own Devices, Adina, Shelly
81. *Lady of Devices, Adina, Shelly
80. *Romancing the Inventor, Carriger, Gail
79. *Cast In Honor, Sagara, Michelle
78. *Cast In Flame, Sagara, Michelle
77. *Cast In Sorrow, Sagara, Michelle
76. *A Gentleman Never Keeps Score, Sebastian, Cat
75. *Cast In Peril, Sagara, Michelle
74. *Cast In Ruin, Sagara, Michelle
73. *The Damnation Affair, Saintcrow, Lillith
72. *The Ripper Affair, Saintcrow, Lillith
71 *The Red Plague Affair, Saintcrow, Lillith
70. *The Iron Wyrm Affair, Saintcrow, Lillith
69. *The Underwater Ballroom Society, Burgis, Stephanie, editor
68. *Cast in Chaos, Sagara, Michelle
67. *It Takes Two to Tumble, Sebastian, Cat
66. *Cast in Silence, Sagara, Michelle
65. *Unnatural, Chambers, Joanna (re-read)
64. *Seasons Pass, Chambers, Joanna (reread)
63. *Enlightened, Chambers, Joanna (re-read)
62. *Beguiled, Chambers, Joanna (re-read)
61. *Provoked, Chambers, Joanna (re-read)
60. *Merry and Bright, Chambers, Joanna
59. *The Ruin of Gabriel Ashley, Chambers, Joanna
58. *Once Burned, Frost, Jeaniene
57. *Night Shift, Harris, Charlaine
56. *Day Shift, Harris, Charlaine
55. *Midnight Crossroad, Harris, Charlaine
55. *Cast in Fury, Sagara, Michelle
54. *Any Old Diamonds, Charles, K. J.
53. *Tea With the Black Dragon, MacAvoy, R. A.
52. *The Omega Objection, Carriger, G. L. (re-read)
51. *Summage Solution, Carriger, G. L. (re-read)
50. *Marine Biology, Carriger, G. L. (re-read)
49. *Threshold, Hawk, Jordan L.
48. *Widdershins, Hawk, Jordan L.
47. *Band Sinister, Charles, K. J.
46. *The Hollow of Fear, Thomas, Sherry
45. *A Conspiracy in Belgravia, Thomas, Sherry
44. *A Study in Scarlet Women, Thomas, Sherry
43. *Poison or Protect, Carriger, Gail
42. *Cast in Secret, Sagara, Michelle
41. *Cast in Moonlight, Sagara, Michelle
40. *Think of England, Charles, K. J.
39 *A Case of Possession, Charles, K. J.(reread)
38. *The Magpie Lord, Charles, K. J. (reread)
37. *A Gentleman’s Position, Charles, K. J.
36. *A Seditious Affair, Charles, K. J.
35. *Cast in Courtlight, Sagara, Michelle
34. *Cast in Shadow, Sagara, Michelle
33. *Inside Job, Willis, Connie
32. *The Tea Master and the Detective, de Bodard, Aliette
31. *Waiting on a Bright Moon, Yang, Jy.
30. *A Fashionable Indulgence, Charles, K. J.
29. *The Curious Case of the Werewolf That Wasn’t, Carriger, Gail (reread)
28. *The Parasol Protectorate: Timeless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
27. *The Parasol Protectorate: Heartless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
26. *The Parasol Protectorate: Changeless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
25. *The Parasol Protectorate: Blameless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
24. *The Parasol Protectorate: Soulless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
23. *How To Marry A Werewolf, Carriger, Gail (reread)
22. *Romancing the Werewolf, Carriger, Gail (reread)
21. *Competence (The Custard Protocol, Book 3), Carriger, Gail
20. *Imprudence (The Custard Protocol, Book 2), Carriger, Gail (reread)
19. *Prudence (The Custard Protocol, Book 1), Carriger, Gail (reread)
18. *An Unnatural Heir, Charles, K. J.
17. *His Consort, Calmes, Mary
16. *An Unnatural Vice, Charles, K. J.
15. *An Unseen Attraction, Charles, K. J.
14. Chanur’s Legacy, Cherry, C. J. (re-re-read)
13. *An Enlightenment Story: Unnatural, Chambers, Joanna
12: *An Enlightenment Story: Seasons Pass, Chambers, Joanna
11. *Enlightenment Series: Enlightened, Chambers, Joanna
10. *Enlightenment Series: Beguiled, Chambers, Joanna
9. *Enlightenment Series: Provoked, Chambers, Joanna
8. Chanur’s Homecoming, Cherryhh, C. J. (re-re-reread)
7. Chanur’s Venture, Cherryh, C. J. (re-re-reread)
6. The Kif Strike Back, Cherryh, C. J. (re-re-reread)
5. The Pride of Chanur, Cherryh, C. J. (re-re-reread)
4. Alliance Rising, Cherryh, C. J.
3. *Introducing Mr. Winterbourne, Chambers, Joanna
2. *Mr. Winterbourne’s Christmas, Chambers, Joanna
1. Merchanter’s Luck, Cherryh, C. J. (re-reread)

* Ebook

Counting Down to Christmas

I’ve finished knitting and stuffing the Julekuler and have gotten them all packed up to be auctioned off for the scholarship fund of the Sekret Klub my mom goes to.  At left you can see some of my collection of knitting bowls — a bowl for each color, and a bowl full of booties in progress, which I can finish now that the Julekuler are off the deck. I got some stiff gold paper, poked a hole in the center of it and put the hanging loops through the hole and taped them down.  Then I put them in clear plastic bags and tied them off with a snazzy Christmas ribbon. Because of the bag dimensions, they had to angle to fit into the bags, which is just as well.  I made three of each kind:  green on red, red on green and red on white, and put one of each in each package.  They all needed to be the same assortment, since only one will be held up for bidding.   Mom has them now and will be taking them to be auctioned tomorrow

This evening, I consigned the AT&T gear to FedX, so that’s out of my hair, and good riddance, and mailed a care package to my BFF.  I got the long phone cord put on the base unit for my cordless phone.  I get to coast until Christmas, which will be nice.  I’m on the brink of starting “Outlander”  I believe I’ll start with the book.   Now it’s time this buckaroo was in her beddie-boo.

No apologies for this:

High Dudgeon

High Dudgeon.  That’s where I’ve been for the past three days now.  As we say out here in the flatlands, madder than a wet hen.  (See left)

Pourquoi, you ask?

So Suddenlink has been sending me these promos, and Saturday I called them to see if I could get a lower price for phone, internet and TV than I’m getting now.  Turns out I could.  That’ll be $165.14, thank you very much — first month’s bill and $45 installation fee.  The tech was scheduled to come out Tuesday afternoon.

The tech shows, looks around and sees I’ve got AT&T, unscrews plates behind the TV, puts a new doohicky on the wall, and then announces that there’s a service outage, and he doesn’t want to leave me with no (land line) phone (I also have a cell), internet or TV, tells me he’ll be back at 9 a.m. Wednesday morning to finish the installation, takes my equipment, and leaves.  Wednesday at noon, I’m still waiting for him.  I try calling their service number and am told wait times are in excess of 20 minutes.

So I get in the car and go to the Suddenlink office, which is just a couple of blocks away.  While I’m sitting in the Suddenlink office waiting for someone to wait on me, just for the halibut, I call Suddenlink on my cellphone.  I got connected on the phone within minutes.(!)  So I’m talking to Suddenlink’s technical support person while sitting in the Suddenlink store waiting for their one working customer service rep to wade through the 7 people ahead of me.  The lady on the phone says they’ll send a tech out.  So I go home.  The tech comes.  He can’t do anything because he’s a repair tech and the install tech took my equipment with him when he left.  So I try the Suddenlink phone number again.  Callers are warned that wait times are in excess of 20 minutes and they’re taking call back appointments — press 1 for Thursday the 5th, 2 for Friday the 6th . . . .  (No, I’m not making this up!)

So Thursday, after my dentist appointment, I go back to the Suddenlink store.  There is one person taking payments, two people helping customers, and about 9 customers ahead of me on the list waiting to talk to a customer service rep.  You have to sign a list to be seen, so I sign in.  In the meantime, I call Suddenlink on the phone again.  I held for upwards of 20 minutes, but somebody finally answered.  I go through my tale of woe to one person, who then transfers me to another person, and I have to repeat my tale of woe to them.   All she can do is send an email to the install team telling them what happened.  Then I wait for them to call me so I can reschedule.  I gave them my cell phone number and continue to sit there.

The SUPERVISOR comes in to start helping with the backlog, calls my name off the list (turns out I’d been there long enough for the 8 people in front of me to be served)  I went through the whole spiel yet again.  She writes another email with all the gory details, but she copies it to the VPs of one thing and another.  She also gives me her business card and instructions to call her if nothing happens.

Home again, home again, and I have some lunch.  At 2 o’clock, I get an automated phone notification that, “A technician is on the way.”  Which I will believe when they actually plong on the doorbell.  In the meantime,  I’d just gotten the latest Liaden Univers™ novel, “Accepting the Lance” by Steve Miller and Sharon Lee, so I’m sitting in the living room, within lunging distance of the front door reading it on my Kindle Fire tablet.

The clock strikes 4:00.  Still no tech.  I’m in the process of calling the supervisor on my cell to apprise her that there is still no joy in Mudville, when the land line rings and it’s the tech.  SHE shows up at about 4:30 and proceeds to set up my service — bang-bang-bang-bang, and she’s done.

And everything works!

So I’m exhausted, way out of sorts, and feeling a lot like John Cleese in the dead parrot sketch.  I had to rattle cages Tuesday afternoon, all day Wednesday and most of Thursday afternoon to get what I paid for.  Now I’ve got to go change the WiFi access on two internet radios, a tablet and my cellphone.

Books Read in 2019

144. *Accepting the Lance, Lee, Sharon and Miller, Steve
143. *Enemies Like You, Chambers, Joanna and Martin, Annika
142. *The Unwritten (graphic novel), Carey, Mike and Gross, Peter
141. *Still Waters, Gabriel, Alex
140. *Nightmare Magazine, Issue 82, (July 2019), Adams, John J. ed.,
139. *Wyrd Sisters, Pratchett, Terry
138. *The Dark Days Club, Goodman, Alison
137. *The Scottish Prisoner, Gabaldon, Diana
136. *Seven Stones to Stand or Fall, Gabaldon, Diana
135. *Wickedly Dangerous, Blake, Deborah
134. *Seonag and the Seawolves, MacGriogar, M. Evan (short story)
133. *Lord John and the Plague of Zombies, Gabaldon, Diana
132. *Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade, Gabaldon, Diana
131. *Lord John and the Custom of the Army, Gabaldon, Diana
130. *Lord John and the Hand of Devils, Gabaldon, Diana
129. *Lord John and the Private Matter, Gabaldon, Diana
128. *Wolfsong, Klune, T. J.
127. *Unnatural Issue, Lackey, Mercedes
126. *Reserved for the Cat, Lackey, Mercedes
125. *The Wizard of London, Lackey, Mercedes
124. *Phoenix and Ashes, Lackey, Mercedes
123. *The Gates of Sleep, Lackey, Mercedes
122. *The Fire Rose, Lackey, Mercedes
121. *Reticence, Carriger, Gail
120. *Competence, Carriger, Gail (re-read)
119. *Imprudence, Carriger, Gail (re-read)
118. *Prudence, Carriger, Gail (re-read)
117. *Poison or Protect, Carriger, Gail (re-read)
116. *Mrs. O’Leary’s Boarding House: Aliens Only, Halsey, W. F.
115. *The Color of Magic, Pratchett, Terry (re-read)
114. Coraline, Gaiman, Neil (reread)
113. Northwest Smith, Moore, C. L.
112. Transcription, Atkinson, Kate
111. *Hither, Page, Sebastian, Cat
110. The Fifth Gender, Carriger, G. L.
109. The Wild Wood, de Lint, Charles (re-read)
108. Tales From The Inner City, Tan, Shawn
107. Good Omens, Pratchett, Terry and Gaiman, Neil (re-read)
106. *The Lightning Struck Heart, Klune, T. J.
105. *Today I Am Carey, Shoemaker, Martin L.
104. *The Corinthian, Heyer, Georgette
103. *Wanted, A Gentleman, Charles, K. J.
102. Tales From Outer Suburbia, Tan, Shaun
101. *The Man With Two Left Feet And Other Stories, Wodehouse, P. G.
100. The Arrival, Tan, Shaun (graphic novel)
99. *Hell or High Water, Cochet, Charlie
98. *Manners and Mutiny, Carriger, Gail
97. *Waistcoats and Weaponry, Carriger, Gail
96. *Curtsies and Conspiracies, Carriger, Gail
95. *Salt Magic, Skin Magic, Welch, Lee
94. *Enemies with Benefits, Martin, Annika and Chambers, Joanna
93. *Lark and Wren, Lackey, Mercedes
92. *Tribute Act, Chambers, Joanna
91. *Brat Farrar, Tey, Josephine
90. Fortune’s Favor, Lee, Sharon and Miller, Steve (novella)
89. *The Soldier’s Scoundrel, Sebastian, Cat
88. *The Lawrence Browne Affair, Sebastian, Cat
87. *The Ruin of a Rake, Sebastian, Cat
86. Shout of Honor, Lee, Sharon and Miller, Steve (novella)
85. The Little Paris Bookshop, George, Nina
84. *Brilliant Devices, Adina, Shelly
83. *Magnificent Devices, Adina, Shelly
82. *Her Own Devices, Adina, Shelly
81. *Lady of Devices, Adina, Shelly
80. *Romancing the Inventor, Carriger, Gail
79. *Cast In Honor, Sagara, Michelle
78. *Cast In Flame, Sagara, Michelle
77. *Cast In Sorrow, Sagara, Michelle
76. *A Gentleman Never Keeps Score, Sebastian, Cat
75. *Cast In Peril, Sagara, Michelle
74. *Cast In Ruin, Sagara, Michelle
73. *The Damnation Affair, Saintcrow, Lillith
72. *The Ripper Affair, Saintcrow, Lillith
71 *The Red Plague Affair, Saintcrow, Lillith
70. *The Iron Wyrm Affair, Saintcrow, Lillith
69. *The Underwater Ballroom Society, Burgis, Stephanie, editor
68. *Cast in Chaos, Sagara, Michelle
67. *It Takes Two to Tumble, Sebastian, Cat
66. *Cast in Silence, Sagara, Michelle
65. *Unnatural, Chambers, Joanna (re-read)
64. *Seasons Pass, Chambers, Joanna (reread)
63. *Enlightened, Chambers, Joanna (re-read)
62. *Beguiled, Chambers, Joanna (re-read)
61. *Provoked, Chambers, Joanna (re-read)
60. *Merry and Bright, Chambers, Joanna
59. *The Ruin of Gabriel Ashley, Chambers, Joanna
58. *Once Burned, Frost, Jeaniene
57. *Night Shift, Harris, Charlaine
56. *Day Shift, Harris, Charlaine
55. *Midnight Crossroad, Harris, Charlaine
55. *Cast in Fury, Sagara, Michelle
54. *Any Old Diamonds, Charles, K. J.
53. *Tea With the Black Dragon, MacAvoy, R. A.
52. *The Omega Objection, Carriger, G. L. (re-read)
51. *Summage Solution, Carriger, G. L. (re-read)
50. *Marine Biology, Carriger, G. L. (re-read)
49. *Threshold, Hawk, Jordan L.
48. *Widdershins, Hawk, Jordan L.
47. *Band Sinister, Charles, K. J.
46. *The Hollow of Fear, Thomas, Sherry
45. *A Conspiracy in Belgravia, Thomas, Sherry
44. *A Study in Scarlet Women, Thomas, Sherry
43. *Poison or Protect, Carriger, Gail
42. *Cast in Secret, Sagara, Michelle
41. *Cast in Moonlight, Sagara, Michelle
40. *Think of England, Charles, K. J.
39 *A Case of Possession, Charles, K. J.(reread)
38. *The Magpie Lord, Charles, K. J. (reread)
37. *A Gentleman’s Position, Charles, K. J.
36. *A Seditious Affair, Charles, K. J.
35. *Cast in Courtlight, Sagara, Michelle
34. *Cast in Shadow, Sagara, Michelle
33. *Inside Job, Willis, Connie
32. *The Tea Master and the Detective, de Bodard, Aliette
31. *Waiting on a Bright Moon, Yang, Jy.
30. *A Fashionable Indulgence, Charles, K. J.
29. *The Curious Case of the Werewolf That Wasn’t, Carriger, Gail (reread)
28. *The Parasol Protectorate: Timeless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
27. *The Parasol Protectorate: Heartless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
26. *The Parasol Protectorate: Changeless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
25. *The Parasol Protectorate: Blameless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
24. *The Parasol Protectorate: Soulless, Carriger, Gail (reread)
23. *How To Marry A Werewolf, Carriger, Gail (reread)
22. *Romancing the Werewolf, Carriger, Gail (reread)
21. *Competence (The Custard Protocol, Book 3), Carriger, Gail
20. *Imprudence (The Custard Protocol, Book 2), Carriger, Gail (reread)
19. *Prudence (The Custard Protocol, Book 1), Carriger, Gail (reread)
18. *An Unnatural Heir, Charles, K. J.
17. *His Consort, Calmes, Mary
16. *An Unnatural Vice, Charles, K. J.
15. *An Unseen Attraction, Charles, K. J.
14. Chanur’s Legacy, Cherry, C. J. (re-re-read)
13. *An Enlightenment Story: Unnatural, Chambers, Joanna
12: *An Enlightenment Story: Seasons Pass, Chambers, Joanna
11. *Enlightenment Series: Enlightened, Chambers, Joanna
10. *Enlightenment Series: Beguiled, Chambers, Joanna
9. *Enlightenment Series: Provoked, Chambers, Joanna
8. Chanur’s Homecoming, Cherryhh, C. J. (re-re-reread)
7. Chanur’s Venture, Cherryh, C. J. (re-re-reread)
6. The Kif Strike Back, Cherryh, C. J. (re-re-reread)
5. The Pride of Chanur, Cherryh, C. J. (re-re-reread)
4. Alliance Rising, Cherryh, C. J.
3. *Introducing Mr. Winterbourne, Chambers, Joanna
2. *Mr. Winterbourne’s Christmas, Chambers, Joanna
1. Merchanter’s Luck, Cherryh, C. J. (re-reread)

* Ebook

The Wind Doth Blow

It’s 51 F out and sunny at the moment, but the wind is blowing pretty steadily at 25 to 27 mph, with occasional gusts of 40 to 50 mph.   That means local authorities have issued a small child warning.*

Humidity is 27%.   **Note to self:  Take out your ear buds before you pull your microfleece lap robe off.

 

*Small child warning -- if your child weighs less than 50 lbs, you'd better throw a rope around them and belay them to something like a car or a tree before you let them go outside.   

**If I don't take the earbuds out first, the static electricity generated by pulling the lap robe off goes right up the ear-bud wires and shocks me in the ear holes.  Gets your attention, I can tell you!

Resisting Temptation and Visual Aids

There are two very large vacant lots behind and to the side of our local VA Clinic.   (The one to the side has a high-rise La Quinta Inn on the other side of it.) They are not only inside city limits and surrounded by houses, but along the frontage road for the SH-27/I-82 (four lane divided) highway where it grazes the eastern edge of the city.  I mention them because both lots have been colonized by prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) .   Because the parking lot at the VA Clinic tends to be jam-crammed on certain days, there is a sign which reads:

DO NOT PARK
ON THE GRASS

One of these days I am going to yield to the temptation to print out and tape up an amendment to the sign, to wit:

DO NOT PARK
ON THE GRASS

It pisses off
the prairie dogs.

Prairie dogs are fun to watch.  I will often park and watch them after I’m done with my clinic visit.  If I’m lucky a burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia) will be hanging out with them.  In its original state, the Great Plains (we’re on the southern end of it here) was notably treeless.  The owls adapted to nesting in holes in the ground, appropriating abandoned prairie dog burrows for same.  (They are perfectly capable of digging their own holes, but why bother if they can get prairie dogs to do it for them?)  They are the only owls without feathers on their legs, and they will chase smaller prey , such as beetles, grasshoppers, and cicadas, on foot.  They are also active in the daytime.

Here’s the finished Christmas stockings or should I say, ‘stockinettes’ (that’s a knitting joke. . . .) with pieces of white ribbon to hang them by.

I’ve been knitting Julekuler at the computer (and watching YouTube videos) instead of in my knitting nook, which presents problems.  I have trouble tracking across lines of a colorwork (or needlepoint) pattern.  I tend to get off onto the wrong line, which is why I have a copy holder for typists in my knitting nook with a little guide ruler on.  (If you do needlepoint, counted cross stitching, or lace knitting from charts, you might investigate getting one of these handy little stands.)

But I don’t have a line marker or anything like that on the computer.  I went analog and stuck a sticky note on the screen.

 

Turkey, Punkins and Julekuler

Artwork © 2019 Gregory Manchess, from Tor.com

Well, at lunch today, I got a rolling start on the pumpkin pie I got at the grocery store Tuesday.  Dear friends S & JH have invited us over for dinner tomorrow, so Friday, I’ll be having store-bought “leftovers” courtesy of Prater’s and Market Street with some of Prater’s good ol’ cornbread dressing, sliced chicken breast (no Carving Board turkey to be had, alas) and jellied cranberry sauce, with punkin’ pie for afters.

 

I’m back making Julekuler again,  The little booklet of 24 patterns is a free download from the Schachenmayr website.  The pattern is from Arne & Carlos, and they have a tutorial.  I’m doing 9 of them for the scholarship auction that Sekret Klub my mom belongs to has every year.  The members are supposed to use their talents to come up with crafts or auctionable items with the proceeds going to their scholarship fund.  My mom’s talent is getting me to do stuff for her.  One year I made snowflakes, one year washcloths, one year neck warmers.

As I have said before, there’s nothing a knitter likes better than a worthy excuse to knit something.  Like the wife of the assistant pastor of her church is expecting a baby in December . . . .  There’s a hat that goes with the ensemble, but the photograph is on my phone and not on my ‘puter and I’m not in the mood to hassle with transferring it over.   I’ve got one bootie to finish, the sweater to block and sew buttons on, and it’s done.

The stockings in the picture of the Julekuler I’m in the process of are hostess gifts for the friends who are having us to dinner tomorrow.  I always like to do a little something for them.  They have been such good friends to my mom, lo, these many years.  She sings in the choir with my mom.  (I have this homonym thing where I know the one I want, but I invariably type the wrong one.  Like just now, I typed “quire” instead of “choir.”  The worst one is typing “meat” when I mean “meet.” I try to tell myself it just seems to be happening more frequently because I’m so aware of it, but I dunno. . .)

This time around on the Julekuler, I’m finally internalizing a technique for catching my floats.  For those nonknitters in the crowd to whom that last sentence made no sense, when you are working with two or more colors, you carry the color(s) you’re not using at the moment behind the work, which leaves a little loop of thread called a “float.”  If you have to carry one color for more than three or four stitches, you need to secure – catch – the float by securing it to the back of your work to prevent having a big long loop of thread you could catch a finger in (mittens or sweater) and so it will look neat.  There are several techniques for this.

Now that I’ve got the float thing down, I want to try again to make me a “death flake” hat.  My first attempt ended up being too small partly because I didn’t catch my floats.  The pattern is a “gothicized” version of the eight-petal rose pattern so popular in Norway and Sweden.  I’ve already made me a hat with the traditional eight-petal rose pattern on, but I have a black cowl that is just begging to have a matching black hat.  I have the yarn.  After Xmas, I’ll have the time.  The hats as well as the stockings and Julekuler are all made with Caron Simply Soft yarn, which I love (except that it splits badly).  It’s an acrylic yarn, but it’s very soft and snuggly, perfect for hats and scarves and cowls.

Last month we had a medication crisis when the stupid VA website wouldn’t let me refill my clopidogrel prescription and I was fixing to go out of town.  I spent about an hour on the phone and finally got them to refill it locally and I went and picked it up.  This month when I went to the VA website and tried to refill the prescription, it wasn’t even on the list!  I called and left a message, which apparently fell down a well, or something.  Tuesday, I went down there in person to see what the heck was going on.

Turns out I’d used up all my refills and had to get a new prescription from my cardiologist.  I found this out two days before a major holiday (with only enough doses to get me through Tuesday of next week) only because I went down in person and rattled some cages.  They had a whole month to warn me my prescription was expiring so I could go to my cardiologist in a timely manner and get a new one, but did they?  Nope.

So, I have to call the cardiologist and get them to fax over a new Rx, which they promptly did, because they are not a government agency.  Then the VA calls me this morning to tell me they tried to call me Tuesday (while I was out doing the things I actually needed to do like renew my car tags and shop groceries) and that I can go pick up my December supply at the pharmacy. So I had to make a special trip today to get the stupid medication I could have picked up while I was at the VA yesterday, only nobody bothered to tell me it was there.  And not to put too fine a point on the whole debacle, all my other prescriptions come in 90-day quantities except this one.  I have to go through the refill rigamarole on the website every 30 days!  I’ve asked and asked that it be changed to a 90-day supply just like all the rest of them, but to no avail.

Oh, and I did get the little sweater finished for the ball-jointed doll, plus a hat.  I need to send it but I want to do another sweater before I do.