They're baaaa-aaack!

I think I may have mentioned before that I don't do bugs.  As in, the smallest, most innocuous invertebrate makes my skin crawl, my palms sweat, and my legs to shake.

I blame this weakness on my older brother, The Philosopher.  When we were wee, maybe five and six years old, he told me a story about a bug called a "Stink Bug."  This particular insect was so dangerous that if it got near enough to spray you with its stink, you would DIE.

Of course, every time we saw any kind of a bug, he'd say "Lookout!  A STINK BUG!"  And I'd go running off, screaming my gullible little head off.

Before the Legend of the Stink Bug was imparted, I didn't have a problem with bugs.  I even had a pet praying mantis.  Alas, now I am reduced to a sweaty, trembly mess when in the presence of such creatures.

Therefore, I'm having a bit of a hard time now that we've been invaded by ladybugs.  There is one on my bedroom window and one on the upstairs bathroom window.  *shudder*

We get them every year, and every year I freak out.  I know they are harmless.  I know they are helpful—or would be if I could manage to keep alive any plants that might attract aphids.  But still... there is something creepy about their hard little shells and how they rattle between the blinds and the window, sometimes fluttering, sometimes crawling, always LOOKING AT ME.  *shudder*

Anyway, at least the ladybug invasion doesn't last too long, and then it will be Winter and all the bugs will die.  And we can live in peace until the giant beetle thingys start coming in through the windows in the Spring.

Can't hardly wait.


Blogging Hypocrites Anonymous

Hello. My name is Jess and I'm a Blogging Hypocrite.

Hi, Jess!

I have a number of blogs I follow and if they aren't updated frequently, I start to resent them. I mean, sure, maybe it's written by a mom of half a dozen kids under age 8 who also works full time as a haberdasher whilst running a farm, but come on, woman, it's been THREE DAYS since you last updated! Sheesh!

And yet, here I sit with a sadly unupdated blog.

I think it's just because other peoples' lives are so much more interesting than mine. Don't get me wrong, my life seems interesting as I live it, but when I sit down to write about it... well... it's just not the same.

Some examples of things I might have written about this last week:
  • For the past few days, I have forcibly extracted approximately 7.3 miles of mucus from Wee Ninja Girl's nose while she gets over her cold.
  • After discovering three little mouse poops on my cutting boards over the weekend, we managed to catch two mice in the have-a-heart trap we borrowed from my ever-so-awesome in-laws.
  • My car has a flat tire again. It's the same one that has gone flat twice before, but when taken to the shop, they can't find anything wrong with it. This time it was just in the driveway and we weren't on our way to WNG's baptism or doctor's appointment, or out of town. So... it really isn't that bad.
So... yeah... fascinating stuff. Sigh.

I haven't even been doing much yarncrafting lately. I am going to try my hand at baking bread sometime soon, so you can look forward to the narrative of that disaster in the days ahead.

As a peace offering to my blog reader (Hi, sis!), here is a pretty summery picture of a bee on some wildflowers.

And here is a decidedly unflattering picture of some deer. I tried to come up with a good caption, but to no avail. Feel free to offer your caption ideas in the comments! (Thanks, sis!)



(Distant) Memories of Summer Wrap

With winter inching closer every day (I hear it is snowing in the northern Midwest already!), who wouldn't want to snuggle up in a lovely Homespun ripple-stitch wrap? As a bonus, it's made in two shades of blue reminiscent of Caribbean ocean waters. So, while the blizzards rage outside (or, if you live in an old, drafty house like I do and even crisp fall temperatures cause your fingers to turn blue and you're a big, whiny wimp like I am someone I know) you will get lots of use from something like this.

I won't, though, because I made it for K, my sister-in-law, whose birthday was last week.

As an added bonus, it works up pretty quickly and you can huddle under it while you crochet.

Yarn: 3 skeins Lion Brand Homespun yarn.
I used 1 skein of "Colonial" and 2 skeins "Blue Sky,"
but really any bulky weight homespun-type yarn would work.

Hook: US size P/12

Stitches: chain (ch), no-turn-chain double crochet (ntcdc), double crochet (dc)

For an explanation of the ntcdc, click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3LxYpo-tyi8

The NTCDC counts as the first stitch of each row. If that stitch isn't working out for you, replace with "ch 3" throughout the pattern.

Foundation row: Chain 62, turn. NTCDC, dc in ch. Dc in next ch. *skip 2 chs, 3 dc in next 3 chs. Ch 2, 3 dc in next 3 chs.* Repeat from * to * 6 more times. Skip 2 chs, dc in next ch. 2 dc in last ch. Turn. (62 sts)

Rows 1 thru 75: NTCDC, dc in dc, dc in next dc. *skip 2 dc, 3 dc in next 3 dc. Ch 2, 3 dc in next 3 dc.* Repeat from * to * 6 more times. Sk 2 dc, DC in next dc. 2 dc in last dc. Turn (62 sts)

I crocheted three blocks of color (Blue Sky, Colonial, Blue Sky) in 25 rows each because I'm kind of lazy, but any striping pattern would work.

Enjoy and keep warm!