Monday, December 15, 2014

Minion Monday

And I even have the hat to prove it!

(See? also, yes, I made those)

I know it's been rather sparse in the blog post category around here, and for that I am sorry! The weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas are busy busy and I'm trying to finish up crochet projects and get them in the mail in time for them to get where they're going before Christmas! Not sure it'll happen, but I'm trying. I need to make a mail run today, and I'll have another by Wednesday (hopefully) to go to my parents' -- I've got a ton of scarves made for various people, and I just need to finish a hairpin lace one for my mom & a tiny stuffed kitten for my brother (I'm coloring it the same as his cat, Julius, whose sweet life is winding to a close), and I'm tossing in a scarf for my dad because I don't know what else to do for him. But I haven't even started the kitten yet, and hairpin lace is quickly becoming the bane of my existence. I have almost 3 strips of the lace finished, but the pattern I'm using calls for four, which may not actually happen -- I may just quit at 3 & start the assembly.

Anyway, it's also the time of year for HOLIDAY STORIES! Yay! I have scraped together enough for a couple of new ones from some of my all-time favorite authors (Amy Lane is a name that springs to mind) but I'm also looking forward to rereading some older favorites from previous years, and watching Christmas movies, too, of course. 

My top holiday movies list includes White Christmas, Hogfather, and Little Women. For books, there's a lot longer list, but I think one of my favorites is Amy Lane's If I Must, and of course I'm a HUGE fan of Cherie's Christmas Rum Balls!

What are some of your favorite holiday things? Anything at all -- movies, books, share a picture of a favorite ornament or holiday moment. We'd love to see & celebrate! I'll start things off with something I love -- my little Nativity set my mom got me for Christmas a couple of years ago. It's pure white porcelain designed to look like origami, and I think it's one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen.

Monday, November 17, 2014


I am SO BAD, y'all! I forget to write up my own blogs, and I've been forgetting to nag Cherie about hers...

But I did make Cherie a scarf that turned out even nicer than I expected it to, so... (I mean. So nice. Even though I don't wear scarves, I want one just like it for me.)

SO, still crocheting forty-three million things, figured out what was going wrong with the afghan I'm making (and had to redo from scratch about 14 flowers for it), and I've been reading. And re-reading. And helping my youngest with another school project.

Anyway, Christmas is coming up (& Thanksgiving for us here in the US, first) -- talk to us about your holiday plans!

Monday, October 20, 2014

No GRL for this Minion...

I'm torn between really sad that I wasn't able to attend GRL this year, and happy because overall I had a good weekend.
just a random little book thing for you.

Of course, I would have been all torn up about stuff if I'd been at GRL -- my favorite favorite band was playing at City Winery Chicago Friday night, and there was HOCKEY Saturday (but then, I wouldn't have been able to afford a hockey game, most likely, and I would have needed a Hockey Buddy so DH wouldn't freak at the idea of me being all alone on the mean streets of Chicago, so I guess it worked out after all...) but doing those would have required me to miss at least a part of a couple of evening things at GRL itself, so...

I *did*, as I said, have a pretty good weekend, though. Friday I volunteered at my boys' school, shelving books in the Media Center (although really, why they can't just call it a library still I do not understand) and discovering old favorites that I want to reread. Later that day my parents got back for the night before heading back home on Saturday. Saturday I helped DH fix his Jeep (it's been out of commission for a week b/c he was having problems with a couple of parts) and then spent the rest of the day herding the kids outside because the weather was perfect -- sunny and in the mid-70s. Sunday, DH went out hunting, which is not my favorite thing, but we've now got a HUGE amount of wild hog to fill our freezer. It tastes just like store-bought, and at current meat prices... Plus DH wants to try his hand at making sausage, which I'm all in favor of. I wonder if we can figure out Italian style sausage; I love to use that in various recipes...

Anyway, all y'all who went to GRL, if you're going to write up a recap, with pictures and whatnot, I'd love to see & read all about it! Leave me links! Let me know who you loved to meet, what was your favorite part, and what you drank at the parties! Was it everything you hoped for? Better? Stranger?

And most importantly...

Did you miss me?

Monday, October 6, 2014

Minion in turmoil

So I think I may have accidentally skipped a Minion Monday blog. And possibly a Fabulous (Fantastic? I can never remember) Friday or two, as well.

I know, I know, it's always hectic in Minion-ville and everywhere else for that matter. I have no excuse. It just seems like the crazy comes in cycles.

Anyway, this week: I have ALMOST finished the star afghan I've been working on since March (or was it February? It's been so long I've lost track). I just have a couple of rows of edging to do. I'm not even sure how many; I decided on a gentle ruffle which requires several rows of consistent increases, so I guess I'll pretty much go till I run out of the navy blue yarn & quit wherever that happens to be.

Also, I used the star pattern from the centers of the afghan squares as a jumping-off point for a really pretty infinity scarf for a friend who's a fan of the Dallas Stars (yes, hockey) -- their colors are green & white, so there are 24 green stars, joined and edged in white. Because of the way I had to offset the stars to join them, the scarf, laid flat, has this lovely sort of undulation to it. But it looks sort of ruffly when it's on, which is kind of cool. I went for a lacy feel when I decided on the edging; not sure if I pulled it off exactly, but it's pretty enough that I wish I wore scarves (& all my kids are wanting their own preferred-color versions of it).

Oh, and I started the next this-is-gonna-take-forEVER afghan this week -- it's an actual pattern, from a magazine, inspired by a wildflower garden. I'm going to have to take some liberties as the recipient requested a queen-sized afghan & this pattern is for a 54" x 60" blanket, but we'll figure it out. And I have some lovely soft charcoal-colored yarn for a scarf for a very dear friend (and ex-boyfriend) who just moved to Denver. So, lots to keep me busy for the next little while. (In fact, here is a link to my Flickr album where I'm posting pics of my crochet projects, both in-progress and as they're finished. If you want you can even explore my other pics; I think everything's pretty well labelled.)

And it's a good thing I have plenty to keep me busy; DH has to do the Reserve thing for an ENTIRE MONTH starting around the 24th of October. So things will be crazy and more than a little tense for a bit. Luckily crochet is kind of meditative for me, so I suspect I will get a LOT done.

On the Cherie-and-reading front, I have been assured that, come January, I will be kept Very Busy Indeed with lots of fun little chores, and I can't wait! I'll need something to do between hockey games! ;) Right now I'm catching up on several things that I have had TBRed fro a long time, because I was going through one of those reading slumps where just nothing seems to work out. You know what I mean. And it was kind of a bummer because it was a lot of stuff I was really excited about -- enough to preorder, which I usually don't do because it throws me off and I forget & sometimes re-buy elsewhere, and not all the pubs actually send you a reminder email when your preorder is ready for download. But as my wishlists are all subtitled "Where Good Intentions Go To Die," I try to preorder anything I'm really super excited about just so it doesn't get lost in the teeming nothingness of Wishlist Hell...

One of those books was Fever Pitch, #2 in Heidi Cullinan's Love Lessons series, and OMG. OMG SO GOOD. I just loved every word of it. I am currently re-reading Love Lessons, just so I can go back and re-read Fever Pitch all over again. And then after I do that, I have to start Amy Lane's Beneath the Stain b/c I finally caved (I was going to wait until it was all done & then buy it as a single novel instead of the serial version, but it turns out I'm not so great at the whole waiting thing). So, now I have six installments of that to read, and I think the seventh is the last one? So I have a week for that.

After that, who knows? My TBR is still ridiculous, so there's no shortage of stuff to choose from, and I probably have a couple more preorders still out there waiting.  And I'm eager to find out what's going to come to me next from Cherie -- your guess is as good as mine!

(P.S. -- If you're going to be at GRL: Currently I'm signed up but don't yet have plane tickets. Some hitches have occurred, specifically things like DH's hospitalization last month and his upcoming Reserve training, which mean that I may not be able to attend. Final decision will be made by Wednesday. Whether I'm there or not, look for Cherie! Give her extra hugs for me!)

Monday, September 22, 2014


I forgot it was my week to blog over here. I kind of spent the weekend ignoring my computer completely. I'm trying to wean my family off the electrical umbilicals BEFORE the boys get their school issue iPads.

And I'm thinking about getting one for myself, soonish. Before GRL.

Anyway, many things to do and it's getting late, because 48-ish hours without touching even my phone? Yeah, there's TONS of wading I'm going to have to do online.

Read things! Be happy!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Fantabulous Friday!

I guess it's my week for the fun stuff, huh?

I'm getting all excited for hockey season -- rookie tournaments, training camps, preseason games, then in about 27 days (but who's counting?!) the regular season! Woohoo!

I admit I'd love it if I lived somewhere closer to a place where I could actually *watch* hockey on the regular without having to pay for NHL channels/website access, but hey! & I'd really really love to be able to watch women's hockey... *sigh*

So for today, here's a comic about a gay boy from GA who used to be a figure skater but is now a hockey player at the NCAA level -- the link is for the start of the "official" comic, but the extra material makes the world so much richer & more immersive (but even at that, the "official" comic can serve as sort of a hockey primer if you're not really sure what's going on).

So please, enjoy Bitty, Jack, Shitty, Ransom, Holster, and the rest of the Samwell Hockey Team. :D

Check, Please!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Minion is tired...

(Just a little humor to get us started)

So it's been a long couple of weeks -- the people I *know* who read this already know about last weekend and what a mess it was. The good news is: My life goes back to normal today! Well, normal-ish, anyway. I mean, my AC is still broken, my car is making some funny noises, and we can't afford to fix either of those situations, BUT. The kids are all in school, no one is sick or in the hospital, and the rest should be fixable by next week, so. We're good.

On the other hand, I think my kindle has bit the dust: I've been charging it, and... well, you know how they have this little light on the bottom next to the place where you plug the cord in, & the light is orange when it's charging & green when it's fully charged? Well, the light is green. But the screen is just showing a big empty battery & won't budge from that. Which, I mean... I don't exactly *mind*; it's not like I really USE my Kindle that much. I just don't like it, for whatever reason. I'm not really sure I can explain all the reasons, but it just doesn't work for me. I much prefer my Sony (which, sadly, is probably pretty close to being D-E-D dead also, but since they've stopped *making* them I need to find somewhere where I can play with a variety of toys & see if I can find one I like. I tried a nook last time I was at B&N & it didn't quite work for me somehow. I am picky, I know.)

Anyhoo...the primary reason I own two reading devices is that one is mine-all-mine and the other is a combination of I-hate-Amazon's-DRM-but-love-the-freebies, I don't want to buy my sons their own ereaders for at least a couple more years yet but it's convenient to have a couple of ereaders with appropriate books on for when we're stuck waiting somewhere & they run out of things to do, and... well, there are a couple of other reasons. Like, I want to read something *right now* & the pub will email it to my kindle so I don't have to go through the rigmarole of finding cords & hooking up the sony to the laptop & downloading & blah-di-blah. Instant gratification. It's a Thing.

On another, but vaguely related, note:

I've found that several books that I've enjoyed over the last several years are being re-edited and re-released. I'm...not entirely sure how I feel about this, honestly. They seem to vary from "a few minor typos & continuity errors fixed" up to "completely revamped, with 20,000 new words!" and almost all with a new publisher (& sometimes the old publisher is simply not in existence anymore, which means if something happens & I want to redownload, I'm outta luck). But I'm in this position of trying to decide whether it's worth spending my meager book allowance on, essentially, rebuying a book I already own. Many times it comes down to "Did I love this book enough that I'm going to search it out so that I can read it again?" Of course, part of the problem is that when I see a title by an author I love, if it's a re-release, I immediately check to see if I already have the original version. When I do, I want to read it, RIGHT NOW PLEASE, but I also need to decide first if I'm going to want to repurchase & read the newer version -- if I *do* then I probably shouldn't re-read just yet.

It's not like buying yet another copy of Redwall (because between my kids & myself, we've reduced two copies at least to fluttering loose out-of-order pages) or Good Omens (because I lend it out & never get it back, or DH loaned it on his last deployment & lost track of who had it, or I just like to throw a copy in periodically when we donate stuff to care packages going overseas).

I do kind of have something particularly Cherie-related that I'm dying to re-read but can't because it's hopefully going to be seeing new life soonish with a new publisher but I can't remember if that is public knowledge yet or not...