Thursday, October 11, 2012

Life is moving along and I'm still stitchin'

Haven't posted in a while.  Things around my way are doing pretty well.  The dogs went to the vet yesterday and are doing fine.  Hawkeye Cat as well.  Yes, it's quite a production when we go to the vet.  Three dogs on multi length leashes arranged so they go diagonally across from shoulder to opposite hip on down to the dog(s), and a cat in arms, also on a leash.  The dogs enjoy the vet visits, especially since once in a while I'll take them over for nothing more than to just sit in the lobby for a while until they calm down, then take them back home.  None of them seem to mind getting shots, and all love kissing and being petted by the vet and office staff.  Even our newest guy, Chip aka Chipper.  (He used to be Charlie, but this fits him better.)  He isn't nearly as afraid of new people now, and is much faster to warm up and want to be petted.  I've been practicing doing baby talk to him since he growled at one of the ladies on staff one day when she had baby talked to him.  I felt terrible about that, since it had never occurred to me that might be a problem.  It was very clear that while he was unsure already, any sort of baby talking he took as a signal that Something Very Bad was about to happen to him.

I do wonder what he went through before he was rescued.  However, now he seems to take that in stride, along with feet touching him.  That also used to freak him out.  He was in fear for his life the first time I happened to raise my foot up at him to scratch his chest.  It took a couple of weeks, but now he's happy to be petted with feet, or see a human do some strange gyrations that include feet of the ground.

Cadee is no longer the extremely shy dog we rescued years ago.  She is still cautious, but she is also a very happy, cheerful dog.  She's happy to go with you anywhere, always dances with joy when it's time for a walk or to do something.  It was a turning point for her when she finally snapped at Chip when he was too intense and chasing her one day.  So many times before that she had this look like she wanted to, but didn't think she was allowed to defend herself.  When I saw her whirl and snap at the air in his direction, the doggy version of 'get out of my space!' I praised her and told her that she was wonderful, didn't have to put up with his stuff.  From that day on she has increased in confidence.  Now she'll even play with him sometimes, even though he tends to be much higher energy than she is comfortable being around.

Cadee no longer flops onto her back whenever someone wants to pet her, and sometimes she'll even take and eat a treat.  For quite a while she would take a treat if it was offered, but would then drop it and not eat it.  Now she'll even eat it.  And she'll come over for petting, sitting or even standing up for it.  Such a major change in her behavior.

On other notes I've continued to do some work on my linen things.  I have now hemmed 4 of the nice big violet handkerchief linen towels.  I use them all the time and they are fantastic for drying my hair.  I've finished one of the medium weight purple linen kitchen towels as well.  It is getting regular use as well.  I've started to hem the second of these and am alternating work on it with work on handkerchiefs.

I have 5 of the 100% linen hankies yet to hem, 3 of the smallest size and 2 of the medium size.  I also cut out some of the linen blend for hankies.  Six per width, so 12 total.  In the last couple of days during travel and meetings I have nearly finished hemming the first one.  I decided to make up some of the blend before going back to the 100% linen.  Interestingly the blend is whiter than the 100% linen.  While it is white, it is slightly more of a cream color. Perhaps there are optical whiteners on the other, not sure.  In any case the blend is a tiny bit softer and slightly more flexible.  That probably will change since linen just gets nicer and nicer, softer and more sheen, as it is used.  Regardless, the fabrics are quite nice, very easy to work with and make beautiful hankies.

I am also glad to report that the linen sheets and pillow cases are continuing to get daily use and are holding up very well.  It is nice to see something that one has planned out then made get that much good use and appreciation.

Recently I've been tempted to make myself a nice knitted coat or vest.  Something mid-thigh or even knee length for warmth when walking outside in the colder weather.  I'm still considering designs and yarns, but am leaning towards something like Meg Swanson's long rendition of Elizabeth Zimmermann's Rib Warmer as is shown in this newsletter.  I'm nearly certain I've got directions for it in either a Spun Out or one of the many books I've already got.  Not sure if I'll go for unspun Icelandic, Sheepsdown, or something else.  Who knows, I may decide to do both a vest and a coat.  I know I'd use them both.

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