Green's Hill-Amy Lane's Home - News

Thursday, April 30, 2009


That's the sound my week is making... there is just something SO fantastically strange about staying home during a spring weekday, and doing it more than once? It's surreal. I don't even get anything accomplished. And I'm afraid Mate and I are going to have to rock/scissors/paper/lizard/spock for who has to stay home tomorrow. Neither of us are in a place where we really can do it without some serious repercussions. (For one thing, I'm scheduled to be out five days in the next three weeks for training... and isn't that whip-fucking-spiffy?)

Anyway, I mooched around the house today, visited The Loopy Ewe on-line and made a FANTASTIC wishlist consisting of about $500 worth of yarn, and then sent it to Mate with the title "Happy Mother's Day to Me!" (Laugh with me, now... I'm not THAT narcissistic!) And then, just when I thought, "She's talking the ears off the frickin' cat, Ladybug has GOT to be better!", I took her temperature.

And it was 101.5. And Spaznado boy's is creeping up from 99.3. And fuck-it-all-to-heck, I'm going to have to stay home tomorrow too... and if my life REALLY sucks, I may have to miss the damned baby-shower I'm working towards for the deadline.

*sigh* *double sigh*

The thing is, when they're REALLY sick, my heart goes out to them and I'd do anything for them. But when they're at that "I'm whining because I can" stage? I feel a little persecuted, really. When I feel that shitty, I just want to curl up in a ball and leave everybody alone--as if THAT would ever happen. When they feel this shitty, they want to whine about it until I want to curl up in a ball and leave everybody alone. And, really, where is the justice in that? But I want them better--not just for me. Ladybug looks sooooo sad, and Spaznado boy is just not himself. *bleargh* How can you sick in the spring like this? (Flash to that lovely scene between Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan in 'You've Got e-Mail'... ah, much better now.) Maybe a bouquet of friendly flowers will make my little Ladybug feel better? We can always hope.

Oh yeah-- I'm scheduled to do a guest blog for someone on the 8th--I'll give you all the link when it comes out, if you want it. I asked the cosmic question, "So What Do I Write Again?" in the piece... yeah. I didn't come to anything definitive either, except, mostly, that that guy from Beowulf deserved a spiffy meal, a nice place by the fire, and a REALLY cool wench. And Mate told me he's seriously going to youtube me when I do my thing at the library on the 18th--which will cause me to avoid the website for years for absolute fear of seeing myself on video, and considering my recent Supernatural Music Video addiction, this could be a good thing.

And really, that's about all. I've had to make the terrible choice to knit more than write this week... ouuuuuuucccchhhh... as much as I love knitting, I want Rampant done and Changing started... The world of the Little Goddess calls!

Oh yeah--in honor of the last day of poetry month:-)

Everything I learned about unrequited love, I got from John Keats:

La Belle Dame Sans Merci

O WHAT can ail thee, knight-at-arms,
Alone and palely loitering?
The sedge has wither’d from the lake,
And no birds sing.

O what can ail thee, knight-at-arms!
So haggard and so woe-begone?
The squirrel’s granary is full,
And the harvest’s done.

I see a lily on thy brow
With anguish moist and fever dew,
And on thy cheeks a fading rose
Fast withereth too.

I met a lady in the meads,
Full beautiful - a faery’s child,
Her hair was long, her foot was light,
And her eyes were wild.

I made a garland for her head,
And bracelets too, and fragrant zone;
She look’d at me as she did love,
And made sweet moan.

I set her on my pacing steed,
And nothing else saw all day long,
For sidelong would she bend, and sing
A faery’s song.

She found me roots of relish sweet,
And honey wild, and manna dew,
And sure in language strange she said -
«I love thee true.»

She took me to her elfin grot,
And there she wept, and sigh’d fill sore,
And there I shut her wild wild eyes
With kisses four.

And there she lulled me asleep,
And there I dream’d - Ah! woe betide!
The latest dream I ever dream’d
On the cold hill’s side.

I saw pale kings and princes too,
Pale warriors, death-pale were they all;
They cried - «La Belle Dame sans Merci
Hath thee in thrall!»

I saw their starved lips in the gloam,
With horrid warning gaped wide,
And I awoke and found me here,
On the cold hill’s side.

And this is why I sojourn here,
Alone and palely loitering,
Though the sedge is wither’d from the lake,
And no birds sing.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Ladybug has the crap. Whatever it's called--goopy eyes, sore throat, lethargy, high-octane whining, burning desire to treat grown people like barcaloungers... that's what she's got.


Seriously--it's a good thing I got in a good post on Sunday--and about that. You all are the best e-buddies in all explored space--I'd knit you magical stuff in a heartbeat. ismarah would get that bookbag (I think she'd probably want hers withOUT the flamethrower option) and for Louiz... well, sweetheart, I'd make you the same thing I'd knit for Bells, with an extra room to put it in. I'd probably knit Eric a degree in anything that lets him play video games all day long and... I'm getting off topic.

Anyway, in the asscrack of dawn, Monday morning, Ladybug woke the entire house with the dreaded SEAL BARK. Yup, yessirree, the croup--as in, HOLY CROUP, WHAT IN THE FUCK IS THAT NOISE?

So she woke us up, and she woke herself up, and then it was all tears and fffreaking out as we gave her some medicine and waited for it to kick in, and first I took her outside and she cried because why in the fuck was mommy taking her out in the dark (it really was the asscrack of morning--one cheek in Sunday and the other in Monday, darkthirty in the fucking a.m.) and that was SKKEEEEERRRRY and now why is mommy putting us in the bathroom with the shower running and that was SKKKEEEERRRY and finally, after an hour, she fell asleep in my arms as I sat in the mildewing throne-room, getting all schweaty with shower mist.

Poor kid--I feel bad for her--it's all sore-throats, mild fevers and eye-boogers for the next couple of days, and you know that can't possibly be fun, not even a little tiny bit at all. And to make shit interesting, it's STAR testing at our school, and I'm torn. I promised the kids a movie after STAR testing. In spite of my administration's valiant attempt to make us not do that, my attitude is a respectful ppppfffffttttt.... I've taken tests before--manual labor afterwards? Absolutely. "Vigorous and meaningful curriculum?" Oh please--what kind of freakin' sadists think that's a good idea? If the state doesn't want us to piss away our valuable instructional minutes, maybe we shouldn't have a week's worth of testing in the first place, hmmmmm? Anyway, the kids will get their movie (erm, Supernatural for the 10th graders. For special poetic reasons that I'll think of as I'm giving them their movie assignment, and Almost Famous for the 11th graders so they can chart out the American Romantic Ideals of the Early 1800ds as they were resurrected by American music in the 1960's & 70's) Anyway, I sort of wanted to be there as my 11th graders watched Almost Famous--it's one of my favorite movies to share with the kids, and they REALLY get a lot out of it, but I think they'd rather have me there for STAR testing, as sort of moral support.

Besides, I was there today with my infamous 3rd period class, and if I hadn't been there to issue a pre-emptive request with the administration to separate the assholes from the animate objects, those kids testing in that room would have sucked eggs because the assholes were in fine form today. (Fifteen years I've been giving this fucking test, and the pissy little girl who stomped out of my class weeping last week is the only kid to ever accuse a teacher who is READING THE TESTING SCRIPT of "giving us bad directions." That kid's karmic rocket-sled is heading for a brick wall at mach 10, I'm telling you!) Anyway, I've done my best to treat this seriously this year, and I should be there for it, right?

But she's not going to be better after tomorrow, which means I lose the chance to watch Almost Famous with my 3rd period. Then and again, I'm having delusions of giving the class the power of referral. If the sub asks the class which kids to send out, and they unanimously vote Asshole 1, Asshole 2, and Asshole 3, doesn't that count? Shouldn't it? I mean, the kids come in, and if Assholes 1-3 aren't there, they look around, sigh in relief, and everyone who ISN'T an asshole says, "Gee, I wish... you know... THEY didn't have to come in." That pretty much is a neon arrow pointing to the fact that it's not the teacher, it's the assholes. *hee hee* Maybe I SHOULD learn how to knit new assholes, just so I can rip them out!

Anyway, all this is fretting with the unimportant chaff, when the grain of it is, my kid feels like crap and I don't know what to do about it. (And swine flu is hitting the news, and that makes us really freaking paranoid even when we're not usually alarmists...) Oh yeah--and she poked her reddened, rheumy little blue-eye with a straw today, so it looks even worse.

I don't know why I'M kvetching... I'd say the person who has the right to whine here is poor Ladybug, who is stuck at home and hating it.

Get better, sweetie... and while you're at it, could you try and let mama get some sleep? She seems to have a serious case of the Zeppelins... you know. Ramblin' on.

(Oh yes--and on a lighter note, as I was telling Julie yesterday, Ladybug was watching a Pooh Bear movie, and she wanted to know about Christopher Robin. I said, "He's Pooh's boy--he plays with Pooh and helps him do things and Pooh just can't have a good day without Christopher Robin."

To which Ladybug replied, "My Christopher Robin is Big Q, right mama?" *sniff*)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Real Knit Creations

So Roxie sent me those two wondrous hats, and some yarn softer than a kitten's whisper (and some more, more sparkly than a tarted-up magpie) and I have become obsessed with what I would knit for those of you out in blogland who are my friends. It started out small-- I'd knit DecRain some Lady Cory's Punk Goth Brocade socks, because she's sent me fan-art (lovely fan-art) and those socks may be as close as I'll ever come to returning the favor. I'd knit Galad some felted cat-baskets, because, well, Galad is totally cool, and her kitties are wonderful. I'd knit Roxie... well, everything, from a lacy table-cloth to a warm quilt to a fabulous opera cape because Roxie would take it all and run with it... and then, as I was plotting these wonders (you know, with all my spare time and everything) it occurred to me: I don't have time. I didn't even get Spaznado boy's sweater done this year (which is okay, because the Stegie pattern came out in Knitty, and now I can knit him that for next year) and I'm working frantically on a baby blanket for a friend and I still have socks in exchange for a portrait of Green and... and... and...

And you just can't do it all.

So I figured, if I was going to knit things for my blog-friends, I'd dream BIG. I mean really HUMONGULOUS. I mean COSMIC SIZED DREAM-WEAR. Now, I've read Roxie's books-- they're wonderful--and Sanna does ever-so-amazing things with magic and knitting. Me likey. So I'm going to steal that idea from the ingenious, practical Sanna and work some magic of my own.

For Needletart: I'd knit an endlessly replenishing bookbag. Whenever you wanted to read a book, you'd just reach in, and your new favorite author would be there. When you are done with the book, it would go to another grateful owner (uhm, me. She's got fabulous taste!) and there would be another book to take its place. Needletart--baby--I'm working on the pattern for that right now.

Littlewitch: You'd get one just like it, only with a flamethrower attached. Because I know you'd use it wisely.

Julie: For you, my dear, I'd delve into microscopic lace--you do inspire a person, you know-- and use the nerve network from the human sacrifices of all the dumbshit doctors who have ever pissed you off--and knit you a new nerve network for your hand. You don't whine at all--for that alone, I would give you hyper-speed, hyper-quickness, and a newly developed bitch-slapping capability, because you would only use it on morons who desperately deserved it.

For Tinkingbells: You're tough, darling--you have such a way of looking positively... I think I'd knit you an extra pocket of time in your day, because you're always so productive and such a wonderful, whirlwind of a mother, I'm pretty sure you'd use it.

For Donna Lee: I'd knit a magical-wish-granting prayer shawl, so you could wish that alien-baby back to outer space--no more surgeries, no more worries, your beloved Em would be alien-baby-free. Hell, I'd settle for the prayer shawl w/out the magical wish granting capabilities... I will work towards having that time, sweetheart. For you.

For Bells: Bells knows exactly what I'd knit for her. We all pray we may someday knit her one.

For Galad: I don't know... Galad is frighteningly self-sufficient... but still, I don't think the felted cat-beds are enough. Okay, here it is: I'd knit for Galad a spider-web-suspension-bridge, so that she may walk across the street and visit her father, who in reality lives three or four states away. Ah, that warp in the space-time continuum--if anyone else gets a breakthrough on one of those, let me know!

For Knittech: I'd knit her a whole new wardrobe, because she has been losing weight like a fiend, and I think that kind of commitment should be showered in only the finest cashmere and the purest cotton blends. And if she'd rather shop for herself, I'd knit her a Dean Winchester blow-up doll--mostly because I know she'd return the favor:-0 (And so Grilltech doesn't fell left out, I'd knit him Ruby--but I need to know which Ruby--blond Ruby or brunette!)

For Mr. Sparrow, who doesn't follow my blog at all, but who has been on my mind lately: I'd knit him clean, alien-baby-free blood, and a hale, hearty return to school next year. I already tried socks. They didn't have quite the salutary effect I'd hoped. I'd work on a prayer shawl, but he's not really a shawl kind-of-guy. I may try a hat--navy, not turquoise, since the turquoise seemed to offend Mr. Trick, and no amount of telling him it looked like a good Irish-boy's colorway seemed to convince him otherwise.

For Curmudgeonly Colleague, who does follow the blog just to see if he gets mentioned: I'd knit him a new asshole. Not because I'm mad at him, or even have any inclination to yell at him, and honestly, I haven't had the urge to do such a thing in a couple of years now. We're cool. But still, that's what I'd knit him, just because then we'd both know I could rip that puppy out if the occasion ever called for it. (Oh, okay, fine. Since that last idea is sort of negative on the karmic scale, CC, I'll work on knitting you that invite to the next celebrity pro/am golf tournament just as soon as I figure out where it is. Or, since we're in magic-Amy-land, would you prefer special golf-club-warmers that are guaranteed to reduce your score? Do let me know.)

For Roxie: Wow. Let's see. Every month Roxie throws a fabulous knitting party for her friends. She provides one-of-a-kind tea-cups, munchies, companionship, and a sort of graciousness that blows my mind and feeds my soul. So for Roxie, I'd knit a simple lace tablecloth--with a self-cleaning mechanism, so that she might spend her time being a fabulous hostess, and not have to lift a finger in clean-up. (And while I"m at it, I'll see if I can get Mate to invent the self-cleaning, self-filling, self-sustaining catbox. Because, you know, that would come in handy too.

And to anybody I left out (well, first off, my apologies! I didn't mean to leave anyone out, I swear!), I'd knit you what you need. Not what you want--we all know THAT'S a trap we don't want to fall in, but what you need, because that's often so very much more appreciated.

Saturday, April 25, 2009


Look what Ceri gave me...

(And why don't I know how to embed these things?

I'm supposed to pass this on--but I don't read very many blogs, (and I'm pretty sure that Bells, Julie, Donna Lee and Ceri already have one!) so I shall have to give this baby to the other people I read.

Roxie , Knittech, and Galad are all crafty and fun, and I enjoy their crafting and writing and supernatural videos (knittech!) very very much!

And now, back to RAMPANT, before my friends on the forums find out where I live and come after me with pitchforks, flaming torches, and cattle prods--they've been threatening me for almost a year, but I think they really mean it this time. I thought I'd appease them with Reaching, but apparently it was like dripping blood in a shark's mouth--the results were a little bit frightening...

Friday, April 24, 2009

A real post this time...

Whew-- it was a long week. I wish I could say it was a good one, or at least an interesting one, but no--it was sort of the same ol' same ol. I do have a few notable exceptions for you, if you'd like to see...

* I effectively called a kid a pissy little girl--but that's not why he huffed out my class in a snit. (Yes, I said he, why?) The thing is, I was passing out practice test packets for their, you know, practice tests. Anyway, this was a class set--and it had been around a while--and some of the pages were coming off. So, instead of saying, "Ms. Lane, can I staple this?" or "Ms. Lane can I get another packet?" this kid says "These pages are awful how come we can't make new ones gees, how am I supposed to know which order this goes in I can't read this?"

To which I replied, "Can we think of a less pissy way to put all that?"

"What do you mean, pissy?"

"Dude, you're whining like a little girl!"

And that's not when he stomped out of my class in a pissy little girl tantrum just to prove I was wrong. No--it was when I called him up to my desk and told him exactly what he said and what it sounded like. THAT pissed him off. I hope he gets used to getting the snot beat out of him when he works fast food until he's 42--he's just not tough enough for anything else.

* Chicken and Spaznado Boy got signed up for soccer again. I found up that I COULD sign Ladybug up, and I must say, I was fairly taken with the idea of her, her red hair a-flyin', sturdy legs a-pumpin', charging down the field for HER ball, but I can only do so much.

"What do you want to be, Ladybug? A soccer boy or a dancing girl?"

And that's when she put her hands up in a full pirhouette and said, "I want to be a DANCING GIRL!" It was precious. She wins. Dancing lessons it is.

* And finally, I went in the staff room today to catch shit for my writing preferences. You think I'm kidding? Mr. Curmudgeonly Colleague went out of his way to accuse me of writing gay porn. I told him there was a matter of ratio that made my werewolf stories not really porn--they were more romance.

"I don't care, they're still butt-luv."

Nice. Anyway, he then asked me why I was still hanging around, and since he'd just totally irritated me (in a friendly, I'm- dicking- with- you- to- make- lunch- go- faster kind of way) , I told him the Goddess' honest truth about Plan BM, which was this: Spaznado boy wasn' feeling good this morning, and Ladybug woke up without him and got mad, so they both had a whine-fest on my lap during the time I"m USUALLY taking my morning dump. Consequently, I was really constipated and in a lot of pain, and I was waiting for the staff room to clear out after lunch so I could go potty in peace.

About the time he blinked and roared, "WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU?" a big mucky-muck from our district came knocking on the staff room door, and Curmudgeonly Colleague got his revenge.

You see, the bell rang, and everybody cleared out EXCEPT Curmudgeonly Colleague and Mucky Muck, who were talking big political mojo. So while I went in to use the bathroom and execute Plan BM, a horrible thing happened: The sound of Curmudgeonly Colleague's voice made the whole works try to crawl back up, and I had to cease and desist Plan BM.

True story. I'm not kidding in the least.

In fact, I shit you not.

(I'm running away now so you can all throw rotten tomatoes at me as I probably deserve. But it really did happen, I swear!)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Too tired to post tonight...

But everybody sounded like they needed a pickmeup, and since the fanfic is done, I thought I'd give you this:

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Part 3: Revenge of the Whoopty 12s

Whew--Thursday I'm writing a REAL post!

Supernatural Fanfic
Attack of the Sock-Gnome
Part 3: Revenge of the Whoopty 12s

It was hard to plan as they heard the ominous thud-smack-bump-crack of the golem rolling around the enclosed space. Occasionally it would hit one of the wheeled baskets and the cart would squeak lazily until it hit something and stopped.

"Do we have all that?" mom asked when the boys were done, and Dean said, "Oh yeah--that shit didn't get wet."

"Except..." Sam looked at his brother and grimaced, and Dean did one of those mind-reading-things that the two of them excelled at, and finished his sentence.

"Yeah--I think they're too blunt too."

"What's too blunt?" mom asked. "The stakes? Do they have to be wood?"

"Well," Sam pulled his upper lip up in thought, "since we're going to torch it too, I don't think so..."

"Doesn't matter," she interrupted. She had the look of a stockboy doing the math. "Okay, guys--give me your keys and I'll get your stuff."

Dean looked at her, his face going hard and hunting for the first time that night. "Lady, my baby's been through enough."

The woman rolled her eyes. "Look, sparky, I'm not going to hurt your car--I just don't think you can find what I've got in mind."

"Lady, I don't care if it's in a violet flowered quilted bag, I'll take your word for it--just give me your damned keys. What am I looking for?"

The woman's eyes were wide. "It's in a violet flowered quilted bag--how did you know that?" She was whispering as she handed over her keys. Dean shook his head and muttered and cursed, running outside wrapped in a baby blanket and a thong and wondering which seal of Hell this particular night was violating even as he ran to the Impala first, mostly to make sure it was alright.

The inside of the minivan was just as chaotic as she'd promised--she and her family must have eaten almost as much fast-food as Dean and Sam. There were blankets, toys, books, soccer chairs, and a flannel sheet that made Dean think dark thoughts about soccer moms and their perverted senses of humor, making a man wear a pink baby blanket when he had flannel as an option. And then he found what she'd asked him for, and he checked on the contents even as he hotfooted across the broken concrete of the parking-lot.

"Aww, Fuck." He reminded himself to have Sam coldcock him if he ever got drunk and started spilling this story to Bobby.

"Knitting needles?" he barked as he cleared the threshold. Mom, kid, and Sam were all crouching on top of the washers, making him think the thing had been back as he'd gone for supplies, and he got to see way to much of his brother than he'd planned on as he scrambled up with is armload of shit. "You had me rifle through the crapmobile for knitting needles?"

"Not just knitting needles!" she barked back, peering over the edge of her washer. "They're sized whoopty-fucking-twelves... they're hella thick, made of bamboo, and there's six of them--they'll skewer that thing better than a big man-sized vampire stake any day of the week!"

"Do you really think they hunt vampires?" her kid asked, looking back at the two young men with a whole new hunger in her eyes.

"Do you really think they don't?" mom snapped, taking the long sized 17 needle her daughter passed her. "Are we ready for me to lay the bait?"

It took some scrambling from washer to washer, but mom had eventually managed to lay a trail of yarn from the back of the drier to the middle of the washer bank. Dean pursed his lips as he looked at it.

"It's kind of pretty," he muttered, shrugging to Sam, and then flushed when Sam shook his head.


"Just sayin'--it's not worth dying for but it's not bad..."

Sam pinched the bridge of his nose and shut his eyes in pain, so Dean shut up.

They hovered there, above the washers, waiting. And then they heard it.

It was the sound of a hundred tiny earring posts grinding together--it was a crunching, and mom whimpered.

"Well, I guess that means he was going to eat it," she said disconsolately, and everybody glared her into silence.

Slowly, as though savoring a particularly sweet dessert, the sock-golum flip-swooshed over the washer bank. It didn't pay the humans any attention as it saw the bag with the half-finished sock in it spilled out on the dirty linoleum. Instead, it let out a sound of pure greed, and lunged.

And then the humans lunged after it.

It screamed pitifully as the little hunting party skewered it with the 'whoopty-twelve' knitting needles, and again as the girl pulled hers out and stabbed it again viciously, getting a little revenge for the slice on her hand, but the screaming wasn't all it did.

"Crap this thing can fight," mom grunted.

"C'mon," Dean ordered, "lets get it out back!"

Their progress was hindered by the guys bare feet, and it became a giant push-me-pull-you struggle, but eventually the little party made it to the patch of broken concrete behind the laundromat, where Dean coated the golem with lighter fluid and Sam lit it on fire. Everybody let go of their skewers and hopped back as it wriggled on the ground, but most of the socks were made of cotton or nylon, so it burned to ash in a hot hurry, even the lost earrings that made up its teeth.

The two hunters and their helpers watched it in fascination, but after the ash had blown away and there was a little bit of light in the sky, it was time to go in.

"Dad's going to wonder where the hell we've been," the girl said as she and her mother were heaping clothes into trash bags.

Mom laughed. "We can tell him we were partying with beefsteak until the sun rose."

The girl had apparently had enough that night, because she started giggling and didn't stop until mom rooted through the bags and pulled out a couple of pairs of old jeans and some X-large T-shirts.

"They're too big," mom said bluntly, throwing them at Sam and Dean. The boys had opened the washer, taken one whiff of what was in there and started the wash cycle again with an extra heaping helping of fabric softener--but not before Dean had a chance to see that one of their woolen camp blankets had disintegrated, leaving everything in his washer coated in fine woolen lint.

"They're too big around the waist and too short at the ankles," mom was saying about the clothes, "and they've got holes, and I'm giving you my cell phone number so you can give them back if you've got a mind too. My husband won't miss them until he mows the lawn next week--and you guys need them, right?"

The boys were going to throw them back--they were. But the woman had pulled out a pen and a gum wrapper and was scrawling her cell number. As she shoved the paper into Dean's hand, she said, "You've got honor, guys--I refuse to believe you're going to make off with my laundry after helping me defend it from a sock-gnome."

The kid stopped giggling in time to correct her mother. "I thought it was a sock-golem."

"I'd rather sacrifice semantic accuracy for poetry, do you mind?"

Dean looked at Sammy for help with that one and Sam mouthed, "I'll tell you later," and the woman bobbed her head, grabbed her laundry, and they left.

Dean and Sam wiggled the jeans on over their borrowed underwear and under the baby-blankets--she was right, the pants were too loose. Dean used the extra room to snap the thong strings, and was relieved to find he could breathe a whole lot easier. They were carefully folding the baby blankets--handmade, and they met eyes as they looked at the tiny stitches. Well, shit. So much for just making a run for it in Mr. Soccer Mom's used jeans. Quietly they programmed her number into their cell phones, which had survived the soaking fairly well, even though they still stunk to heaven.

"We'll call her before we leave town," Dean said quietly, and Sam nodded. Her words about having honor rang in both their ears.

Three days later they called her and arranged a meet--and they even learned her name. She arrived at the wash-n-dry with two younger children in the back of the van and a bag full of stuff just for them.

"There's some new clothes," she muttered, embarrassed, "and a shitload of lasagna in little tupperware containers. You got a cooler? Good, put it in there and let it chill, or it will go bad."

She blushed and jumped in the car, gracing them both with one last grin, before Dean could get to the bottom of the bag.

He started to laugh and Sam turned around to see what was so funny. Dean put the bag on the ground and started to pull something out. It was thick yarn, double stranded and obviously knit in a hurry, but it looked to be a very large afghan in about ten different colors of something wool. Pinned to the blanket was a handwritten note--"That's what whoopty-twelves are REALLY good for."

Dean had spent the last three days bitterly complaining about that wool-blanket-lint, and he and Sam met eyes and didn't say a word as they packed up to leave the suburbs for a while. A poltergeist at a college in Milwaukie, Oregon--time to go.

They stopped up near Crescent City after a day of driving, and ate the lasagna cold. It was better than diner food and went pretty damned good with beer, and they called it good.

That night they parked the car under a bridge to sleep, Sam in the back, where the steering wheel didn't get in the way of his long legs, Dean in the front, in the driver's seat, where he was comfortable.

After a few moments of silence, Dean spoke up reluctantly. He had a new wool blanket, the smell sharp and acrid, and he touched it reluctantly.



"Is there... you know. Enough of that blanket to..."

Half the blanket sailed over the back of the seat and smacked Dean in the face. He snagged it and pet it as he fell asleep, liking the colors and the feel and even the smell--the family must have had a dog, but they also had baby powder and lasagna and someone had rose-scented hand lotion.

It smelled like home. After a little time around leather, engine exhaust, and gun oil, it would smell like their home as well.

Poetry Month

Don't worry--I'll post part three later tonight.

But first, this is one of my favorite poems--I love the idea that perfect words make love eternal--

Edmund Spenser

One day I wrote her name upon the strand

One day I wrote her name upon the strand,
But came the waves and washed it away:
Again I wrote it with a second hand,
But came the tide, and made my pains his prey.
Vain man, said she, that dost in vain assay
A mortal thing so to immortalize!
For I myself shall like to this decay,
And eek my name be wiped out likewise.
Not so (quoth I), let baser things devise
To die in dust, but you shall live by fame:
My verse your virtues rare shall eternize,
And in the heavens write your glorious name;
Where, whenas death shall all the world subdue,
Our love shall live, and later life renew.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Part 2: Suburbs and Sockgnomes


Guess what Roxie sent me? Guess? You can't guess! Not in a million years! I got this box, right? And it was super light, and I couldn't figure out what it was, and then I opened it and... and...


Do you see that? Seriously? My very own Farseeing Hat and Lizard Queen hat.

Uhm, well. They WERE my own. Right up until I got them out of the box. Tomorrow I'll show you the picture of Chicken wearing the Farseeing hat--she's actually smiling! (Proof indeed, that Roxie is my own personal miracle worker!)

Thank you, darling--your gift was wonderful, and I have no words!!!

And now, by popular demand... (okay, there were nine of you, not six--Grilltech, I'm sorry there was no Ruby--next time I do one of these, I'll keep you in mind!)

Supernatural Fanfic
Attack of the Sockgnomes
Part II: Suburbs and Sockgnomes

Sam smirked and Dean shot him a disgusted look. Decent people. Decent people were walking in on them--the same kind of people they tried to protect, and here they were... well. Not naked. Not quite.

Mom shook her head and laughed a little. "Look, guys? Was that your car out front-- the one that smelled like a cowshit and vomit milkshake with a stinky-cheese chaser?"

Dean grimaced. "My baby..." he muttered, and mom nodded her head yes.

"Yeah--I can see how that would be a hardship."

"Why didn't you just go home and change your clothes?" the kid asked, scowling anywhere but at the two hotties crouching at the end of the washer bank.

"Because, kid," Dean snapped, "everything we own was in that car."

The kid blinked, and met his eyes. "Sucks to be you," she said apologetically. "Uhm... howzabout we just get our clothes and go, right?" And now it was mom's turn to grimace.

"Hon--we've got another half an hour on the driers--why don't you just bury your nose in a book, and those nice young men will... uhm, guys--you got any chairs back there?"

They both shook their heads no, and Mom dragged two chairs towards them--when they made ready to shrink back, she blew them off.

"Guys, I've got more'n one kid--I've seen those things before. They're not scary."

When she'd dropped off the chairs she stalked off to the car outside , coming back in a moment with a couple of afghans which she dropped on their laps as they sat, blushing, not meeting eyes with each other or her, until Dean let out a an indignant "hey!"

The woman turned around with a smirk and nodded towards the lacy pink & cream colored baby blanket. "It went with the knickers, sweetheart."

"Mom!" the kid complained, and mom chuckled. The kid shook her head and grumbled. "Next thing you know she'll be making daddy wear them."

Mom chortled a little more. "Ah, baby, if only..."

"Eww--give me some visine, mom, I've got to go clean my inner eye."

Mom pat the girl's head. "That's what books are for, sweetie," and then she pulled out a set of earphones and some knitting from the bag at her daughter's side. Dean watched her curiously and tried not to pine for his walkman--damn. He might actually have to buy an iPod now, and the thought of his brother, smugly showing him how to set it up, made his teeth grind.

The kid didn't look up at all after that--not even a little--and the silence in the laundromat was punctuated by the heavy thump of the overburdened washers and the blurring whoosh of the driers until the skittering behind the wall of driers got too loud to ignore.

"Mom--sounds like a rat," the kid said, looking up with interest.

"Not the pet kind, sweetie," mom said assessingly. "That thing sounds like it's the size of a chihuahua--it probably has big yellow teeth and moldy-moldings breath!" Mom held out her little knitting needles as teeth and made 'fftttt-ftttt' sounds until her kid looked up and laughed. Dean cracked a smile, and the kid noticed and buried her nose back in the book. Mom looked up and winked at the guys--and they exchanged their own looks.

It was nice to see ordinary sometimes.

And then that thing skittered behind the drier again, and mom grimaced. "Seriously, Chicken--what in the hell is back there?"

And then it ran out in front of her, straight for the little bag of yarn she'd been knitting from.

"Oh FUCK!" Mom hollered, "Sock gnome!" With a practiced movement she hefted the purse next to the knitting bag and swung.

"Sock gnome?" Dean and Sam mouthed at each other, and as the purse exploded into the creature, they saw what she meant.

It was made entirely out of colored socks--black socks, pink socks, blue socks, little slipper socks with cat's tails, big bulky socks with rubber soles. It had a baby-sock for a nose and a boy's tube sock for one arm with a man's dress sock for the other arm. It skittered on multiple sock-toes, swish-swishing over the dirty linoleum.

As the purse made contact with the thing, all of it's little sock-toe appendages sucked into it's body, making it one big lump of unclaimed laundry that thumped off of the bank of washers and down at their feet. Dean kicked out instinctively, and there was another bang-thud as the thing yelped and bounced off the side of the washer and skittered away.

The two men leapt to their feet, their half-crouches showing their experience in dealing with bad shit, but it was too late--the creature had disappeared behind the driers again, and only the occasional thud let them know it hadn't fallen into a heap of stray footwear in the tangle of electric cords and lint.

The girl hadn't stood yet. She simply sat, looking at her mother in wonder.

"Nice shot, mom!"

Mom grinned. "Yeah, but the fucker still got up and walked away."

Sam and Dean shook their heads--for one thing, this nice maternal woman had a mouth worse than Dean's. "What was that thing?" Sam asked his brother, and before Dean could shrug, the teenager said, "World's weirdest Red-Hot-Chili-Peppers-Fan?"

All the adults looked at her, and mom grinned. "Nice one!" she praised, and the kid grinned back.

Dean adjusted the baby-blanket around his waist, and tried to hide a smirk, and then they all heard the thing come back.

"Sock-gnome?" Sam asked, raising his eyebrows, and Mom shrugged.

"Probably more like a sock-golem, you think?"

The brothers blinked. "A golem?"

Mom blinked back. "A thing made of mud or dirt or cast-off stuff, animated by pagan prayers and some sacrifice? You know, a golem?"

Sam nodded. "Yeah, I know what a golem is--how is it that you do?"

The woman grimaced like it was obvious. "Hey--I watched the X-files. The Scully & Mulder in the suburbs episode was AWESOME!"

Sam glared at his brother, as though Dean's daytime tv habit was somehow catching. "Okay, fine--a sock-golem. What makes you think it is one?"

The woman shrugged, her oversized T-shirt rucking up around the bounteous pudge at her waist. "I'm pretty sure a laundromat gets it's share of prayers, right? Please let my red sock not be in with my whites? Please let my wife not find my girlfriend's earring? Please God or Goddess let me have washed all my underwear? I mean look at you two," a vague gesture in the vicinity of their clutched afghans. "I'm pretty sure you guys were praying fervently to Whoever that no one would walk in while you were... you know... flapping in the breeze."

"We were covered!" Dean yelped indignantly, and that maternal don't-bullshit-me look was aimed his way.

"You were flapping, buddy. That mouse was NOT in the house, and I'd adjust those lace eyelets around your waist or he's gonna get out again."

"Big things need to prowl," Dean muttered with some offended dignity.

"Things that prowl get shot, sweetheart," mom snapped back. " I have the feeling that guy's seen a lot of freedom-- you may want to put a leash on him."

Sam made a sound between a chuckle and a snort, and refused to wither when his brother glared. Mom looked him over with a wry twist to her mouth .

"Laugh it up, Spongebob," she said with a wicked twinkle, and her daughter choked on a snicker and smacked her mom on the arm.

"Stop macking on the pretty men, you old cougar--that thing's coming back!"

Mom made a growl and a hiss at her kid, and Sam tried to get control of the conversation with an "Okay, fine!" They looked at him. "It's been formed with cast offs and activated with prayer." There was another particularly loud thump behind the drier, and one of the four driers made a zzffftttt sound and shorted out. "What activated it?"

The woman shrugged. "I don't know--it seemed to be hungry for my merino sock-in-progress, but as for what triggered it... maybe you guys are just..." again that playful smirk, "reeky with magic."

"Oh God," Dean groaned, and scrubbed at his face with his hands. "Fucking witches!"

"Ignorant perverts!" the teenager shot back, and Dean matched her scowl for scowl.

"No, not you--the witches who... who filled my car with muck."

Sam groaned and tilted his head back, and swore.

"Jeepers, Mister," the teenager quipped, "those were pretty words! Can you think of anything else that rhymes with 'muck'"

Sam leveled a glare back at her and decided she must have gotten her sarcasm for her mother. "He's right. We've got all this residual magic and... probably jump started it, like driers jump-start static-electricity..."

There was a that now-familiar dry-swishing sound, a thump, and then the thing was back, rounding around the driers and charging for the four of them full speed.

The teenager pulled her foot back and swung, solidly connecting and the thing splat the glass wall hard enough to add another crack to it, and then just rolled again and came back, heading straight for mom and her little bag of socks.

"Nice kick, honey," mom panted, backing up. She backed right into the young hunters and shrieked loud enough to shatter her dignity. Two well muscled arms came around and pulled her back, and Sam and Dean moved in front of her and then her daughter protectively.

The skittering got loud again, and there was a series of thumps as it hit the chair bank adjacent to the front wall, and everybody in the room swung their heads slowly as the sock-gnome circled them and came back around for the sock bag in mom's hands.

"Well shit," mom muttered as the guys got in front of her again. "Does it want the sock to eat or does it want the sock to add to it's body?"

"Does it matter?" her kid asked angrily, aiming another kick at the thing and bashing it back into the chairs. "Just give it the damned sock, mom!"

"No!" mom protested. "It's for your Aunt Monica for her birthday!"


"Well what's going to happen when I give it him... guys kick it kick it kick it stomp in it squish it! Get it get it BITE ITS UGLY FUCKING HEAD!"

The thing had charged and all of them were busy playing sock-golem-soccer with the damned thing as mom cheered them on. Dean gave it a particularly vicious kick and it hit the bank of driers with a loud THWACK, and that seemed to discourage it for a minute, because it retreated back behind the driers, leaving them all panting and breathless and... bleeding?

"That damned thing bit me, mom!"

Mom looked at her daughter's bleeding hand and tsked. She reached into her precious yarn bag and pulled out a band-aid and some neosporin and started dressing the wound, then looked up and said "Well shit-- guys--what'll the blood do to it?"

"Probably make it stronger," Sam muttered. "Why don't you two just go--we do this shit all the time, we'll figure it out."

Mom glowered. "Dude, we've got a week's worth of laundry here--come up with a better plan. One that DOESN'T involve feeding that thing my Aunt Monica's birthday present if you can manage it."

Dean looked thoughtful for a moment--hard to do wearing a baby-blanket and a thong, but Sam, at least, thought it was an admirable effort.

"Can we use it as bait?" Dean asked, and mom stared at him.

"Use what--my sock?"

"Yeah your sock--that things got a...toe-up for your precious sock--let's use that!"

Mom looked like she was going to say no, and then her sense of reality set in and she sighed. "Do you promise not to hurt it?"

Sam raised an eyebrow. "The sock or the sock-gnome?"

"The sock--you can fry the fucking sock-gnome, that thing's creeping me out!"

There was another ominous thud behind the driers and the four of them began to plan.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Fanfic in three parts

Okay-- you all asked for it. Angst & veal and knitting, the fanfiction that only a select group of six people on the planet could ever appreciate--and I wrote it.

It could be worse. It could be slash.

Anyway, I should be able to post this consecutively, and then I'll go back to Rampant--I've been working on it too, but, you know... sometimes it's fun just to play!

This is me, playing.

Supernatural Fanfiction: Attack of the Suburban Sockgnomes

Part 1: Swamp Things & Suburbs

They managed to kill the damned witches--and had even managed to salt the bodies and burn them down in the tiny suburban home that had housed the coven under the guise of single girl's bunko night. (Dean had seen through that ruse in a hot minute. "Single girls don't play bunko on a Friday, Sammy--not when they're hot.") It didn't matter--anyway you sliced it, the town was done coming up short dogs, cats, and the occasional unruly toddler.

But they hadn't counted on the hex bags placed in five corners of the Impala.

They had just cleared the outskirts of Rio Linda when the car started filling up with fetid, corpse-reeking swampwater, replete with the rotting charred remains of the bitches they'd just offed.

Dean had managed to keep the car from skidding in a ditch as Sam rifled the glove box (one), checked the map slats (two and three), dug under the back seat (four) and behind his brother's ass (five).

By that time, the water was up to their waists, Dean had pulled off on a cattle road, and they'd had to open the doors, skate the slime out, and then rummage through the para-ghost-military gear in the trunk to find the salt, the accelerant and a lighter that wasn't sopping wet.

The stench was truly hideous, and Dean tried not to whimper as he looked at the car's upholstery... goddammit all, he'd just oiled the damned leather.

"I HATE fucking witches!" he shouted to the heavens, and Sam had to agree with him--although Sam's laptop wasn't damaged in the least. It had been in the back.

It didn't matter. They both stank to high heaven, and their duffles had been in the back seat of the Impala, not the trunk. Everything they owned was swimming in eau de gag-a-maggot, and it was the middle of the night. It wouldn't matter--they'd need to clean up to even get INTO a Wal-Mart--and besides that. The car came first.

They found a do-it-yourself carwash, and neither of them batted an eyelash as Dean submitted the clothes they were wearing to the powerspray--even though it felt like their skin was being stripped from their bones. The upholstery and the rugs were going to need to be gone over several times--and the stench might still linger slightly when they hit the hot and humids (and what part of middle America WASN'T hot and humid in the summer, Sam wanted to know? Dean's answer of "Hell wasn't, it was hot and dry!" shut him up right quick.)

All that remained to do was to hit the laundromat--hopefully at darkthirthy fucking a.m., they could strip down to their skivvies and even use the big machine to wash their duffels while they were at it.

"Do we have enough quarters Dean?" Sam asked, and for the first time since the stench had saturated his brother's baby, Sam saw his brother's dimples.

"As long as cheap motels have magic fingers, Sammy, I'm gonna have a roll of quarters."

Sam rolled his eyes, and together they cruised what used to be a thin strip of military driven businesses before the air force base had moved. They saw several out-of-business X-rated movie theaters and some strip clubs, but they had to go two suburbs over to get to the only all night laundromat for what was apparently miles.

It was almost two a.m. on a Saturday morning when they found it--Citrus Heights Laundro-matic, but find it they did. The late-spring night was warm so they left the doors open, hoping the interior might dry out a little more before it got bright and things started to steam.

Together, they started sorting their laundry-- Dean's pile and Sam's pile, everything dark, even their cotton underwear-- and Dean looked up suddenly.

"Djya hear that?" he asked, and Sam shrugged.

"I heard the drier. That should concern us."

Dean blinked. "Why--are those things dangerous?"

Sam shook his head and shoved his jeans into one washer and his T-shirts into another. "No, but I'm going to strip down to my underwear and someone might come back for that shit."

Dean made a face. "Quite frankly, Sammy, my underwear's starting to chafe like a sonovabitch." He started stripping so he could get his jeans in the jeans load and his shirts in the shirts load. "I was planning on going commando."

Sam grimaced. "Dean--this is a nice little suburb--being in my underwear is one thing but..." he flushed. Being naked was quite another. He didn't even need to say it. He started stripping on his own and shoving his sopping clothes into the appropriate washer, when he heard some rifling and a grunt.

"Hereyago, Sammy--just what we need."

A pair of man's boxers hit Sam in the face, and he wrinkled his nose.

"Spongebob? You got me Spongebob Squarepants underwear? Where did you get these? And what in the HELL are you wearing?"

Dean grinned, his fingers adjusting a pink lace thong. It wasn't big enough.

"ewwww... Dean-- we're wearing someone else's UNDERWEAR! And how come I got Spongebob!"

"It's from the lost and found, Sammy--which means it's been lost, washed, dried, and sanitized. And I was gonna give you the girl's thong, but you've got to have some kink to carry these babies off."

"I've got kink!" Sam protested--right before he realized what he was saying and flushed.

"See what I mean?" Dean waggled his eyebrows. "Now put those on and get rid of your boxers, Sammy--I don't wanna be smelling dead witch on my skin for the next ten years, right?"

"I'm so over following your orders," Sam grumbled--but he put the boxers on, and watched as his brother gave him an I-dare-ya-to-follow-me grin, then hopped up on the washer holding his jeans.

"C'mon, Sammy--I mean, this IS my magic fingers money, right?"

Sam grunted and walked over to the bank of cheap plastic chairs. He sat down and winced when the bare skin of his thighs made contact with the plastic, and then sighed and opened the laptop. "I'd rather surf the net for a job."

Dean shook his head and wiggled his ass. "Just don't surf for porn in those things, Sammy--like you said, you don't want to get busted in a laundromat."

"You are SUCH a perv..." Sam muttered, and at that moment, his worst nightmare walked through the door.

They looked innocent enough--a mother and daughter, plump, sturdy, and, in the daughter's case, as pretty as fierce cat--both of them with curling red hair. Mom's might have been dyed--but it was close enough to the girl's color to have been hers at one point.

They walked through the door preoccupied with a sharp banter that might have been confused with fighting if they hadn't been smiling at each other the whole time.

"You don't have to come with me," muttered mom. "No one's holding a gun to your head."

"Well, it was my fault," the girl grudgingly admitted. "You told me..."

"And told you and told you!"

"Fine. I broke the washer. We need clothes. I might as well come with you, okay?"

"Fine! Just don't yell at me when you sleep away your Saturday because you forgot to use a pillowcase when you felt something!"


"I mean how many times have I told you that the fibers will just CLOG the pipes..."


"But NOOOOO... you think because it's a stuffed animal it will be o..."


Mom's eyes took in the two mortified young men. Dean had hopped off the bank of washers and was hiding behind them, and Sam was backing away to join him, his laptop held in front of his very tight Spongebob boxers.

"What sweetheart," Mom said blankly.

"There's two naked perverts in the the washndry."

"We're not naked!" Dean squeaked, and Mom's eyebrows hit her hairline, and she gave him a give-me-a-break head-bob.

"We've got underwear on," Sam muttered, and looked behind Dean, whose butt-floss underwear looked pretty much non-existent. "Sort of."

"Stop looking at that, Princess," Dean muttered. "We're trying to make a good impression."

"See honey," Mom said dryly, "If they were naked, THEN they'd be perverts."

Sunday, April 19, 2009


It's NOT an exchange hotbody from Brazil...

Yeah. It figures. I've got one day of vacation left--ONE day. I managed to accomplish a few things this last week I was proud of-- lots of Ladybug snuggling, the Jack & Teague story, a couple of trips to the park, a couple of visits with grandparents, I didn't kill the flippin' dog--all in all, I was feeling like a well rested and sane mommy yesterday morning... and what should sneak into my corpus and grab my urethra by the balls?

A-yup. Big U. Big T. Nasty little 'i'.


Excuse me while I go to the bathroom... all finis...nope. Not yet. No. Gotta go one more... OWIE OWIE OWIE OWIE... and so on. I've taken the appropriate meds, but my step mom has a surprise party today and I've got to make potato salad and show up and I FEEL SO FUNKY. Besides the fact that the idea of leaving the house for longer than two and a half seconds makes wish we'd stocked up on Depends. (And I need a boatload of potatoes.)

Uhm, did I mention, BLARGH?

Anyway, so far J&T seems to have done the trick-- I've gotten some good feedback (thanks guys!) and I feel better and better about the progress of Rampant and... and... excuse me. I've got to go to the bathroom!

Okay, I'm back now.

Anyway, I was hoping that J & T had cured my desire to write Supernatural fanfic, but oddly enough, the guys are so different from the guys that J & T don't really fill that niche anymore. (Yeah, some of you could follow that...) Anyway, it's weird how much a single imagination can corrupt one original construct and twist it into another one--the human brain is a-freakin-mazing. Besides that, thanks to Knittech, I've got a raging desire to see what the Winchesters do with sockgnomes. If I can keep my sick little perversions out of it, I may post it here, because I have the feeling that an hysterical knitter, some moths from hell and a sockgnome bent on merino consumption could make for some damned good copy. Well, for a really select group of people with twisted senses of imagination and a taste for angst & veal, it could... uhm...

Oh god... gotta go pee... 'scuse me!

Okay, all back now. Did I mention the meds make it putrid-popping orange? Yeah. Sorry-- TMI!

Anyway, we DID take the short people to the park yesterday--for about two hours. It was BLISSFUL. They ran around forEVER--until they were so tired that I almost thought we'd lost them because they'd gone under the slide to sprawl like starfish and make bark-angels. (Uhm, yes, we bathed them when we got back, why do you ask?) And then we got home and all I can remember after that was checking a few blogs and going to the bathroom. A lot.

If ONLY Uti was a hotbody exchange husband from Brazil...

Saturday, April 18, 2009

What I Did With My Easter Vacation...

Besides taking the dog to the vet, that is!

I am pleased to announce that the third Jack & Teague installment, REACHING, is up at the website. And remember--feedback just makes me write faster!!!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

This post is for Bells

Who wanted to know what Dead Muppet Fur Project of Shame we had hiding in our cupboards.

This here was made for Chicken, back when she was seven or eight--it was supposed to be a shaggy, Chanel cut coat with a big yellow ribbon, to be made for svelte models with sunglasses. The pattern is (everybody scream) Vogue Knitting, and it was about the time I realized that I'd never fit into anything they made, but the models were very pretty. Chicken wore it over her Easter Dress (back before we were pagans, I guess) and loathed it immediately after--but for a little girl, DMFPoS was definitely glam. The good news is, that this was at least six years back. The bad news is, we can't even ship it out to a landfill--it probably has a half life of at least six-thousand years.

You'll have to excuse me...

If I seem a little distracted when I've been blogging this week, it's because most of the time, I'm typing like this:

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Okay, Roxie, FINE!

(Uhm, see comments of the previous post to get the title;-)

The yarn is Red Heart Baby Soft (sport)-- some blue & brown mottled, held double strand with a J hook.

Ch 98 or so, Ch 3 dc ch 1 sc in 4th ch from hook, work a crooked shell across (2 dc, c1, 1 sc)
Ch3, turn
Work dc ch 1 sc in first ch 1 sp., work crooked shell in all ch 1 spaces across,
repeat for 6 skeins worth of yarn or until the last skein gets so tangled there's no hope for it and you don't want to waste your time with the last fifty yards or so. (It's acrylic--if it was merino handpaint I'd spend the time!)

Three rows of ch3 sc in an available space in brown Red Heart Soft Worsted (1 strand) for the edging

And the applique-- done in Red Heart Soft, dk brown, lite brown, aran, & black

Face--w/dark brown make 1--ch 4, 9 dc in 4th ch from hook--join w/ch 3 w a sl st (do so for each round)
r1--ch3 dc in first st, 2 dc in each dc around
r2-- ch 3, work 2dc, 1dc in stitches around
r3--ch 3, work 2 dc in next st, then 2 st 1 dc around
r4--ch 3, work 2 dc in next st, then 3 st 1 dc around
r 5--ch 3, work 2 dc in next st, then 4 st 1 dc around
r6--ch 3, work 2 dc in next st, then 5 st 1 dc around
r7--ch 3, work 2 dc in next st, then 6 st 1 dc around
join last round w/slip stitch and cut yarn, leaving LONG tail for sewing

Ears-- make 2
W/ light brown first
ch 4, work 5 dc in 4th chain from hook
ch 3, turn, work 1 dc in same st as chain, then work 2 dc in each stitch across, finish off, weave in ends

w/drk brown
ch 4, work 5 dc in 4th chain from hook
ch 3, turn, work 1 dc in same st as chain, then work 2 dc in each stitch across
WITHOUT finishing off, join drk brown piece w/light brown piece back to back, then sc through both thicknesses around ear, working 2 sc at the corners of the ear, join the round and cut yarn, leaving long tail for sewing.

Eyes--make 2
with aran
ch4, work 9 dc in 4th chain from hook, finish off (leave a tail for sewing)

Eyeball & nose --make 3
with black
Ch 4, work 5 dc cluster in forth chain from hook, finish off (leave a tail for sewing--leave an xtra long tail on the nose for embroidering a mouth on the muzzle)


ch 2, work 9 sc in 2nd ch from hook, join w/slip st (for all rounds),
ch 1, 2 st in same st and in each st around
ch 1, 1 sc in same st,( 2 sc in next st, 1 sc in next st) work around
ch 1, 1 sc in same st, (2 sc in next st, 1 sc in next two st) work around
ch 3, dc in each st around, cut yarn, leave long tail for sewing

Using photo (yes, Roxie, a photo!) as placement, sew face together-- sew the ears to the FRONT LOOP of the head itself, so you have something to use for that part of the face as you're working around. The ears themselves may be sewn flat or left to flop (I sewed them flat)--it's your choice.

And then give it to your neighbor with the two month old-- hey, it's not my fault the kid was early!!!

A slightly guilty commitment...

Okay--I have to admit to what I've been doing all day. It's going to shock you--don't hold it against me.

I've been YARNING. Yes, YARNING. In this case, I'm not making a distinction between knit or crochet, wool or acrylic. It's moot. I've been sitting in my chair COMPLETING A BIG PROJECT. I know--I should be writing or blogging or, hey, cleaning house would be an improvement, and there's always reading which I consider a part of writing and something I SHOULD be doing. But I didn't. I finished the acrylic baby blanket--and if I hadn't converted to wool, I'd tell you it looks fucking AWESOME. But I am a wool convert, and so it's got that squeaky sheen, so it only looks decent.

I'd even spring for a photo, but while I was busy in the kitchen on Sunday, Big T took the camera outside and did me proud. He got all artistic and took some shots of his siblings that I'm very impressed with. (For instance, the one of Ladybug ISN'T upside down--he laid on the ground to get her backlit by the sun. I thought that was hella cool.) And it looks like blogger is going to let me share, so you get to see my kids and know I DIDN'T cook them up for Easter ham--as much as Big Q looks like he should have been on that platter.

Which reminds me-- Today's Q-ism? We were watching The Cat In The Hat when he said, "Mom--that part wasn't like the book!" *ah* Music to every reading parents ears.

And Ladybug has been a big glom-monster. I'm talking two hours in the morning and an hour in the afternoon--uhm, could be why I've had so much time to finish that baby blanket, right?

Anyway, I'm still working on Jack and Teague (just not today) and after a discussion w/my young Paduan have determined that no, I have not shamelessly ripped off Supernatural for my guys--I was just really inspired. Which I'm starting to feel for the end of 'Rampant'-- I am frequently impressed with how, when I don't STRESS over a deadline, the inspiration for what needs to happen comes in its own time. Weird, hah?

Oh--hey--need to shout out a thanks to Ismarah for reviewing Bitter Moon II in the U.K.--I'm glad my albatross got represented across the pond:-)

And that's about all--hope you like the Easter pics... my older kids were all about helping the younger ones with the egg hunt--sometimes, they make me so proud I have to wonder if they're really mine. (And then Chicken mouths off and Big T starts quizzing me about heroic archetypes, and I don't wonder anymore.)


Sunday, April 12, 2009

Eggs like giant bunny poop...

Mostly, I've got a bunch of little stuff-- think of them like verbal Easter eggs, stuffed full of chocolate (we hope) goodness...

* Knittechkeeps sending me the most AWESOME Supernatural videos, for which I will always love her, and my bank account will always hold a grudge against both of us! But a public shout-out, darling, because Thunderstruck is one of my top three faves.

* Ladybug's poop did NOT turn yellow-- but her father DID have to put her and her brother in the car and take them driving until they fell fast asleep because they were little spazznados until that happened. She actually ATE A DYE TABLET--I was so surprised. Even as a baby she wasn't a 'mouther' but she was playing with the tablets and the little buckets and there it went... crunch crunch crunch. Ick.

* I forgot to mentioned that Little Q's feet were pink. Bright. Pink.

* I lost my fucking mind this morning, and when the first alarm went off I tried to kick Mate out of bed to go hide Easter eggs. Mate (rather indignantly--go figure!) asked if he mightn't wait until THE FUCKING SUN CAME UP, and I said, "I'm sorry I'm a fucking idiot. Go back to sleep." I still don't know what the hell I was thinking.

* The eggs WERE hidden at a suitable hour. A little too suitable-- we had to knock a couple of slugs off. (ick. just. fucking. ick.)

* It's a good thing they were plastic eggs!

* The hard-boiled ones got mushed up for lunch while I was cooking dinner today. The spices declared war on the amateur in their midst and the chili powder plastic 'shaker' lid came off when I was spicing the egg salad--I had to add the rest of the eggs and much of the mayo just to compensate for the big FUCKING DUMP of red spice in what was supposed to be a mild concoction of my usual. (Garlic salt, lemon pepper, chili powder-- it kills almost anything that rears it's ugly head and insists on gastronomic autonomy.)

* Ladybug went through two Easter dresses today. That's okay--I got pictures of both!

* The big kids loved the ham, loved the Easter eggs, and REALLY loved the showing of The Sound of Music--the only traditions I've really carried on from my misspent yute. (My Cousin Vinny was on the other night too--can you tell?"

* The house is clean-- that won't last.

* And Ladybug needs me--I'll rant tomorrow on the fuckwittery--but to see it done at it's best, check out The Smart Bitches and you too can wonder how long it will take before amazon realizes what I write and my sales plummet to the freaking basement, and then Billy Graham will take over in an unholy coup and we'll be operating in a Puritan regime. *sigh * Okay-- I might have had a little rant today.

* But I really owe Ladybug a snuggle-- I'll be back tomorrow with an attempt at little girls in pink dresses.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Let the record show...

My daughter's poop is going to be yellow for a week.

So will her teeth.

There is a pink spot on the floor that will never come out.

The table cloth is toast.

So is the green towel.

And a couple of pairs of pants.

And the Spongebob underwear.

And my King's T-shirt.

The kid's fingers are purple and blue and orange

And pink and green (but not yellow!)

And there are only thirty eggs left out of a cool three dozen.

The dog's farts are turning lethal.

And she'll be crapping eggshells for a while.

And a couple of crayons didn't make it.

And the big kids showed up just long enough

To show off their drawing skills

(With crayons we can no longer use.)

And mom is retreating to the bedroom

With a cold cloth

And a trashy book

And her i-Pod set to Linkin' Park.

And the family is proud to announce

That this year's pagan fertility symbols

Have been decorated with food dye.

Happy Oestre.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

This Lemming Likes This Quiz

Your rainbow is intensely shaded blue, orange, and red.


What is says about you: You are a strong person. You appreciate energetic people. You get bored easily and want friends who will keep up with you. You share hobbies with friends and like trying to fit into their routines.

Find the colors of your rainbow at

I'm a Vampire and I"m...

Okay, let's back up a little.

First of all, I'm given to understand that no one wants my dragon? Tough, y'all-- you read me and he's laid his egg in your brain... ha ha... just wait until that puppy hatches. No, I'm not adopting--that little offspring is all yours. Lucky you.

Anyway, I've got a couple of cute kid stories before the dragon screams at me again--I may save the best one for last.

Let's start with Chicken.

I've often said that my family couldn't live without meat-- we were NOT meant to be vegans, and this story proves it. Chicken and I were grocery shopping and I bought the Easter ham--mostly because I was afraid they'd run out before I REALLY get a chance to shop. (We were only supposed to be there for milk, and 150 dolars later, we did have milk. And a ham. And a few other things including ice cream and Doritos.) So Chicken and I met up in the frozen food section and she saw the ham.

And hugged it.

"Oh, mama," said my fourteen-year-old, "I like ham. Look at it. Isn't it pretty? It's large. So firm. So tasty..."

"Should I leave you and the ham alone?" I asked, opening the frozen pizza door.

"Stop being a pervert!"

"I'm the one being a pervert? You're the one fondling the damned ham in the middle of frozen foods!"

And that was when she tried to slug me and I tried to dodge and frozen pizzas jumped off the shelves to avoid the melee. It was the two stooges go to Safeway, and I told her that's what she gets for public displays of affection for a smoked meat product. She says I taught her everything she knows. I told her she's not allowed NEAR the bacon, and we're leaving it at that.

And Ladybug--Ladybug is the reasons I'm having trouble checking your blogs. Whenever I try, she jumps on my back, shoves a puppet in my face and asks me to 'talk to me'. Or, to talk to the doll she's holding in her hand. So, folks, sorry--my brain has been shanghaid to play dolls. As I recall, when Chicken was little and tried to get me to do this, I made the hamster puppet eat the Barbie doll and that was the end of that. But that thought has haunted me with some mother guilt for over eleven years so I think I'll skip that game with Ladybug. That and I don't think 'Hamster-eats-Barbie' will even slow her down.

Big T watched 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest' this weekend. He loved it-- a lot. In fact, he thinks it was a lot like Cold Case. Yes. You can say it. I'm a totally sucky mother--it's true.

And to prove that last thought? In public? In front of my family? Here it is, folks-- the ULTIMATE Cave Troll story.

It happened at Ladybug's party--we were all sitting at the big family picnic table-grandma, grandpa, sister, brother-in-law, cousins, etc., and the Cave Troll was looking for some attention. He started mugging--hollering things like "I'm a zombie, I'm eating an arm!" and "I'm gonna eat my little sister!" and we all rewarded him with hearty laughter.

He enjoyed that, and decided to run with it. Standing up on the picnic bench, he shouted, "Look at me, I'm a vampire!" And then, (and I don't know where he got this word--this isn't one he got from the family, it doesn't get thrown around in EITHER of it's meanings) he screamed, "I'm a vampire! I'm QUEER!"

Well, MY family just stared at him with our jaws open--my sister's family is VERY conservative, to the extent that I haven't even showed her my books. She knows I write them-- my mom has told her a LITTLE about them, but she doesn't know, the uhm, details. And then my brother-in-law (the youth pastor of, again, a VERY conservative church) said with a totally straight face, "Well, I understand that vampires are doing that these days."

We laughed until we almost wet our pants--but the people who know what I write? Well, we didn't look each other in the eye--not a little bit, not even at all.

Monday, April 6, 2009

The Dragon in My Blood

Madeleine Urban (bless her!) posted a most awesome poem about writing on and although she claimed it was 'SOOOO EMO' me likey so much I had to join in the fun. I mean what the hell-- isn't it National Poetry Month, right?

The Dragon in My Blood

Bastard child of reading and dreaming and anger and angst,
Screaming for mind-milk, shrieking for me to change his shit
At the worst possible moments.

I'll feed you in a moment, the dragon is calling,
Your diaper can wait, the dragon is calling
I'll pick up the trash on the floor when the dragon stops calling
Water is backing up, flooding my ankles, don't step in it
Don't worry about it you can wear dirty clothes and clean
The house yourselves, choke through the dust do your own
damned laundry because Christ, can't you hear the dragon calling?

He's screaming my name, his filthy claws are ripping the flesh around my heart
His teeth are gnawing at my throat and my voice is harsh with his roars
The best parts of me, the humor, the wit, the lovely spring days
Consumed by his hunger for me, his unyielding demand for my soul.

Can't you hear him can't you see him can't you feel him
are you up to your ears yet in his synasthaetic stench?
I'm sobbing I'm angry I haven't pissed in all day...
But it's no use.
I can beat his ugly snout with a 4x4 until we're both
bloody and splintered, but he's there, he's howling,
Gouging chunks of my liver and spleen like a crow on steroids
Until we vomit my life force on the page.

Even then, when he retreats to the cave between ventricles,
He's not still in rest. He lays dreaming, grumbling,
Urging me to fix this, re-forge that, continue to twist
The DNA of the terrible egg he wants planted in your brains.

Come read me, come dream me--doesn't that sound fun?
Don't you want a dragon of your own?

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Happy Birthday Squishy Belle

She is three.

Because we forgot the camera, I shall have to content myself with downloading our most recent picture for the hell of it (which didn't download--I'll try again this evening), but you've all seen her--she's stunning at three. (I can say this, because she looks less like me and more like Mate than any of the other kids put together.)

She's also clever and gracious and funny--she knows how to play to a crowd. She still sucks her thumb--we call it the 'thumbspace'--and can zen out when things get too tough. Yesterday, at my mom's house (and THEY got plenty of pictures--they've promised to send them to us) she opened bag after bag of clothes--and oohed and aaahed every bag. And thanked people. And although she looked longingly at the bag that held the toys (the one from mom & dad--I confess) she was grateful and charming. She even read the cards.

She let grandma dress her up in a favorite new outfit within minutes. She jumped up and down and got excited about it. She let grandma put in earrings too-- (it's been a week or two--they were starting to close up) and didn't whimper, not even a little. She ran around in circles, played on the tire swing and flirted unmercifully with her grown cousin (who is such a kid at 22 that he flirted unmercifully back.) And this morning, all she wanted for her post-birthday hangover was to huddle in my lap.

She's my Squishy Belle, my dessert baby, my triple-chocolate covered almond liqueur delight--and she gets better with every calorie, more interesting with every day. She tells jokes, and looks up at us with disingenuous blue eyes--she knows she's cute. She insists that the kids at daycare call her 'Princess Arwyn Star'. And she is our princess, and we are all helpless in the face of her wonder. My brother got her a butterfly balloon and she treasures it, and she refuses to give up her new nightshirt because it was a present. She is headstrong, can stand up and fight with her brother at the drop of the hat, and bloody brilliant-- she tucks herself into her own bed at night because she doesn't want to sleep in mom and dad's bed where her brother falls asleep. She'd prefer to sleep by herself, thank you (although when things get scary at dark thirty in the morning, she does crawl in sometimes.) She likes squishy kisses and butterfly kisses and eskimo kisses and sugar kisses-- but butterfly kisses are her favorites, so she asks for those.

I love you baby--you were a total surprise, the best kind of surprise, the kind we don't know we need until we get them and then we can't imagine life without them. You will grow up as we are growing old, and that will be okay--your brother and sister adore you and they will be all the young you need, and we can be wiser, happier, and more blessed by you, since we're a little creaky on the run and play bit. (Not too creaky--Dad still chases you around the house every night at bathtime, and around the cars when it's time to leave. Mom still picks you up and kisses you until you giggle--that's your magic baby... you make us younger.)

You are the family's Evening Star, and we can not be grateful enough for you.

Happy Birthday, Squishy Belle. We love you.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

A Life In Stories

Wow--you guys REALLY liked the me-me-- thanks for everyone's response, it was REALLY fun to read other people's!

And now, on my 600th blog post (yup... you read that right...) I have some stories to tell you about stories.

Tonight I put together a little 'traveling birthday party' for Ladybug to take to day-care. She will be three tomorrow and we're having a party at my parents on Saturday, but we wanted her to celebrate with her peeps on the day itself, so there I was, goody bags, gift bags, and plates galore. It was late (because DUDES, I had to wait for Supernatural--and the episode ROCKED!!! They made fun of us slash writers and I LOVED it--HURT ME MORE, Kripke, it makes me happy!!) and I was watching the last episode of ER, even though I'd sort of let the series slide this year, but I'd been a faithful for more of the fifteen years than not, and as I teared up a little, suddenly it hit me.

I started watching this show the fall Big T turned one. Mate and I had watched in fascination as this new way of storytelling revolutionized our television, and we had no choice but to watch because it came after Seinfeld which came after Friends and our hearts started to beat with these people and we were pulled helplessly into their stories. Big T is big enough now to watch the show--and he did for a season or two, and OMG, as my older kids hit adulthood and the younger ones grow up, it has begun very plain that I've marked their lives through stories.

I've always defended television--we don't sit and listen to storytellers anymore, book tastes vary, but whether you watch a show or not, everyone is aware of the various electronic storytellers waiting to fill our hearts with the blood-throb of fiction when we push the button. My students who watch fiction television are always my best students--and the ones most open to what fiction gives the human experience. It's the kids who ONLY read non-fiction or who ONLY read classics who don't really get it--they see the sublime in the intellect alone and throw human experience in the white-trash garage.

So it was fitting that tonight, as I was getting ready to kiss my baby's babyhood goodbye, I thought of some landmarks that I've marked with tv--and thought I'd share.

* We used to let Big T and Chicken stay up late so we wouldn't have to have bedtime wars during Friends. Man, that show was SACRED. On the night it went off the air, Big T and Chicken sat and watched the last episode--and we all cried. Man, they grew up with that show--those grown-ups were living the life that they grew up to want. Since Mate and I have lived such small, sheltered lives, I owe Ross, Rachel, Chandler, Monica, Phoebe, and Joey some of the scope of our children's dreams.

* I was alone in a big scary house watching season 2 of the X-Files while Mate worked nights at Fridays before he was out of school. Chicken (who is one day younger than Gillian Anderson's daughter Piper) was born Saturday night at 8:00 p.m, 23 hours after I went in labor. How do I know that's when I went into labor? Because the Liver-Fluke man episode played that night, and I took one look at that squidgy fucker in the porta-john, went "OHMYGODICKY!" and WENT INTO LABOR. No shit.

* When my crazy friend Wendy and I got caught in the flood of '86 because we were ass-stupid, we walked the three miles to shelter (I was barefoot--did I mention ass-stupid?) singing the soundtrack to Miami Vice. Glen Frey, thanks buddy--I'll forever and ever associate 'Smuggler's Blues' with swimming lamas and one of the stupidest things I've ever done.

* Finding Nemo was available to buy the night I gave birth to The Cave Troll. I was sitting there, knitting the world's ugliest sweater (or, I should say, sewing the crooked assed seams) and suddenly I started to get contractions that CRACKED OPEN THE FOUNDATIONS OF THE FUCKING WORLD. Every ten minutes. Now the books tell you that you're supposed to go in when those puppies get seven minutes apart. They never did. At one in the morning, Mate got out of bed and I said, "Where are you going?" He said, "To call your mother. I've had enough of this shit."

* My obsession with Batman started when I was pregnant with Big T--they showed most of the original animated series episodes at four-thirty or so in the afternoon. I had just gotten my first teaching job when I was seven months pregnant (they fired me for that. Bastards.) and Mate had to walk to work at five-fifteen. So I'd get home, be exhausted, and our half-hour together before he walked to work was watching Batman together. And to this day, I love Batman--Torrant started out as Batman, and damned if Aylan didn't introduce himself as Robin... I LOVE this story dynamic with everything in my slash-pervy, hero-worshipping soul.

And I could go on-- but it's late, and I have to go to sleep and I'm feeling the Jack & Teague dragon waking up and threatening to rip through my blood over Spring break, so I will, at the end, leave you with this.

* Three years ago to this very day, I was devoted to Gray's Anatomy and Desperate Housewives. I've since stopped watching both of them--Gray's Anatomy mostly because it conflicted with Supernatural, and something had to go. But three years ago, I was devoted, and I was sitting in my chair, trying to knit, and wondering when my next contraction would hit. Would it be in five minutes? Ten? An hour? They'd been on and off for three days, and sometimes they were awful and sometimes they were mild and never, never did they continue the same pattern for more than an hour running. Well, they were five minutes apart for forty-five minutes. OMG, this was it, we were going into labor. Are you ready to go? Mmm... No. I want to watch Gray's Anatomy first. And I did. And sure enough, the contractions left off.

They started up again when the show was over, but the rhythm was off, and it wasn't until a couple of them that I was sure were going to rip the floor of the house open that I decided I'd had abso-fucking-lutely enough of this shit. I was going to the fucking hospital or I was ripping God's eyebrows off. And when the poor sleep-deprived, nicotine addicted resident who 'delivered' (the nurse actually caught' Ladybug checked my dilation and found me eight centimeters dilated, he asked me "What made you decide to finally come in?"

The answer was simple. "I'd had enough of this shit." Of course I had another contraction then, but I could have added, "And there isn't anything good on t.v."

And so it goes--George Orwell thought that proles would never save the world because the marked their life in small events--fighting at a sister's wedding, getting a girlfriend knocked up, whathaveyou. How embarrassing-- I DO mark my life in these things. They just happen to the people on the magic glowing box in the corner of the living room. And I could leave you with that thought right there--but it's not entirely accurate.

I don't remember what happened on Gray's Anatomy that night. I do remember singing to Ladybug as she sat next to me in the little isolette box--she had started to cry and I wasn't allowed to get her out yet. She stopped crying immediately and turned her head, staring at me with big blue eyes that I was suddenly convinced would STAY that way. She knew me. I was her mama. And now that she knows me in person, she knows that she can come sit on my lap anytime. We'll watch some tv together and play with her toes and she'll give me a baby and we'll make up a story. Any time. T.V. can wait.

So maybe it's all good. I seem to be marking my life by T.V.--but I'm not living it there, and that's just fine.