Friday, February 02, 2007

My coffee is cold

I drink roughly one cup of coffee per day, in the morning. I say roughly because sometimes I have another, but most of the time I don't even drink that one whole cup. Now, I don't mind sipping on cold coffee as a rule. I don't drink fast, so I figure that is my lot in life. Warm cold drinks and cold hot drinks. But on freezing cold mornings like this one (want to know how cold it is? I am wearing a long sleeved shirt and SOCKS) a nice, hot cup of coffee would be nice. Some years back my mother bought me one of those mug warmers. One of those ones that plug in and look like a mini hot plate. And it does work. It works very well. TOO well, as it boils the coffee sitting in the cup. I didn't want cold coffee, but having it hotter than when I made it wasn't working either. Then one year for christmas she gave us all these marble trivets that go in the microwave. They hold the heat for a long time to keep your food warm. And it came with a bonus small one for coffee cups. MUCH better. It keeps your coffee drinkable warm without boiling it. The only bad part is you might have to heat it more than once, if you are a slow drinker like I am. A lesser evil to zapping the coffee itself, because in that case it is too hot, then almost instantly becomes cold again. Now. Why am I not using this miracle marble device? Because I can't fricken FIND it. The husband and child claim not to touch it (although I find it equally often in the basement and in the toy room so they both apparently DO touch it), and really I can't see what on earth they want with it. DD is too small to use the microwave (she can't even reach it) and I don't think DH would be able to heat it without asking eleventy-seven questions first. He can't heat precooked bacon without asking eleventy-seven questions first. Plus I don't believe he really understands what it is for. This past week-end I rescued it again from an area of the house where I rarely go and placed it on my desk. Although I hadn't used it, I know it was there because I had my pen cup on it. Today, when I would LIKE to use it, the marble coaster is gone. As is the pen cup, my pencil holder, and my desk scissors. I won't even bother looking for the tape, because we all know that has been snitched as well (what is it about tape and children?) and I am too fragile to handle that knowledge at the moment. I am going to go lie down with a cold cloth on my head. I can save myself a trip to the bathroom - I'll just borrow the washcloth DD snitched to use as a barbie blanket and dip it into my coffee cup.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Good-bye, Judas Priest

No, not the heavy metal band. The fish. The Chinese Golden Algae Eater, to be exact. Normally in an unheated, small tank like ours they don't live all that long or get too large, as I understand. When we brought it back to the place we bought it, the salesperson actually looked startled. "Uh, I've never seen one get so big". And despite my warnings that this sucker can jump, he was even more startled when Judas Priest tried to take flight out of the container. I was assured they would resell him, and not flush him. Then again, he's too big to flush anyway. He's almost big enough to eat! Six inches long, not including the tail. So we say good-bye to another inhabitant of our little fishie tank. He just got too big and was very territorial. He was harassing Cedric The Murderous Goldfish. Cedric has a checkered past as a fish killer, it was quite disconcerting when he himself was being bullied. That has to be some tough fish, to make Cedric cringe and hide behind the filter tube like that. I'll say this for him, he was fun to watch. Especially when he started to get bigger because he spent less time hiding and more time doing silly things. Like digging under stuff so vigourously that it sounded like a jack hammer in there. Or making himself a little hidey-hold under Big Rock and sitting in it with his head poking out, not unlike a moray eel. Or re-arranging the decor in the tank. You heard me right! He would re-arrange the decorative stones by pushing them around. He liked them piled in one corner. I like them scattered across the bottom. So I would scatter them and he would spend the next two days gathering them into the corner again. Did I mention I have no life whatsoever and there were times that this little game was the highlight of my day? Yeah. LOL! He also enjoyed swimming around really fast then flinging himself out of the water in unbridled aglae eater glee. Thank goodness for the tank cover, or he might have ended up in my lap a few times. Which I am pretty sure would have resulted in a whole lot of shrieking and a possible brain meltdown on my part if it ever happened. When I was trying to catch him, it was quite a comical sight. At least according to the child nearly wetting her pants from laughing so hard anyway. I had DH on the phone (I don't know...for moral support?), so I was cradling the receiver on the one side, using one hand to hold up the aquarium cover and the other to try and net the fish that was swimming so fast he was practically reversing time (a la superman. Remember that scene?). I was getting soaked from the splashing, dh was giving me helpful tips like "Put your hand in there and corner him, then scoop him up". PUT MY HAND IN THERE? Even if I had a free arm, there is no way I was sticking it in THERE. There are crazy, murderous, furiously swimming fish in there. And a gigantic snail, for goodness sake! I saw that movie when I was a kid. When those weird creatures that looked like a cross between a star fish, snail, and octopus sucked the juices out of people. Sure, this is a snail and not an alien being - but what it saw the movie too and got funny ideas? No thank you. I thought DD would be a little upset about having to return one of the fish, but she could have cared less. She didn't like the algae eater after she found out it was chasing and bothering the goldfish (and in fact killed my beloved Dudley). Her suggestion was to throw it in the snow. I am not sure yet if I should be worried about that suggestion ROFL. DH wanted to fillet it (it is almost big enough) but I have a rule about eating pets. Or feeding one pet to another, which quashed his next suggestion - feed it to the cats. I live with some sick people, folks. In knitting news (and you all just hang on your seats for knitting news, don't you. Just admit it. *Snork!), my brother has called and begged me for a new hat. Remember the hat I made him for Christmas? The one that I totally changed the pattern and didn't write it down and who knows how the heck I made it? Yeah. It was his favourite hat, it seems and now he can't find it. His dog is notorious for stealing things and hiding them in the yard, but he checked and hasn't found it there. He was worried I would be mad, but I told him it was no big deal and I think I had some of that yarn left - but it may not be exactly the same as before. I think he just really liked the brown with the mis-matched green stripes. So I might cast that on this week-end. I started the cuff for the second too-small-sort-of-pirate-illusion mitten (yes, you DO see skulls on there LOL - it is the pirate mitten from Hello Yarn). I haven't touched my scarf in ages so I want to try and get that done. AND. I have promised a hat to another child. What is wrong with me that I get myself into these things? Why do I think that children, who regularly insist they want ponies for their birthday or to have a unicorn for the backyard, can make a sane request when it comes to wearables. She said she would like me to knit her a hat for her birthday (party this week-end). A green hat. With a design on it. And a pompom. So far so good right? Well, maybe she would like matching mittens. And her doll could use a hat and mittens too. And her mom and sister ROFL. "After all, one hat is not worth $25.00" she observed. That is the "accepted" amount that DD's group does for birthdays, more or less. I am thinking maybe the hat, mittens, and a Bratz doll. Her mom and sister will have to wait for their own birthday ;).

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Snow snow snow snow snow snow!

We got more snow. Lots of snow. Fluffy white snow. I like the snow. Sure, the roads get slippery and the windshield is covered again seconds after scraping. But it shore is purty! Everything looks so nice and clean, covered in a blanket of whiteness. The lawn, the driveway, the car, MY FLOOR. I hate hate hate stepping into melty snow and water on the floor. I usually have bare feet, and that is bad. But to step in that with socks is even WORSE because now you have wet socks. Wet socks are almost as bad as wet jean cuffs. Wet jean cuffs cause wet bottoms, because I always sort of sit on my feet. Yes, even in a chair. And no. I was NOT born in a barn. I was raised by wolves. There IS a difference, you know. You can bet tonight DD will beg to go sledding. I guess I should wash and dry all the gloves. See, they got wet while she was playing in the snow. And the gloves got put into a plastic bag and placed behind the chair. Then, a day or so later, every time the heat came on I noticed an odd smell. Kind of a mildewy sour, wet sheepy smell. Yep, the gloves. The gloves that had been marinating in their own juices in a closed bag on top of the heating vent. Phew! I tossed them into a bucket of warm, soapy, bleach water (just a few drops of bleach, don't want to dissolve the things). Two water changes later, they no longer look like they are decomposing and the smell is gone. The wool mittens will be set aside and they MIGHT be dry by next week. The others can go through the washer and dryer. I would let her borrow the mittens that don't fit, except right now it is the MITTEN that doesn't fit - I haven't made the mate yet. But I will for sure. I love those mittens and I know somebody will be able to wear them and love them like I do. Somebody with small hands an odd sense of humour - tee hee! I wonder if they sell snow pants in my size. Pretty ones. Not those navy blue or black ones you can get at Canadian Tire or surplus stores. Powder purple ones. Yeah, purple ones would go great with my 'Clown coat of many colours', brown boots, and multicolour earflap hat. Don't look at me like that. I know fashion. 'Dayglow rainbow on acid' is the new black.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Damn these man hands!

I am sure I have mentioned before, but I was born into a family of blonde, blue eyed, birdlike people. Recent evidence shows that there is SOME hope and the "giant ogre" genes kick in after having kids, but still, for the most part, they are waifs. The ones that are not still have dainty fingers and hands, tiny necks and wrists, and the pink complexion of porcelain dolls. Add that fair hair and those light eyes - all they need is a bonnet and parosol and you could display them right on a shelf.

I am not like those people. My skin is ruddy. My eyes are not blue. My hair is brown. I am not waiflike. My features are NOT dainty. There is not a single dainty thing about me, in fact. Unless you count that tenuous grasp on sanity. THAT little thread is mighty dainty. Ahem. Back to me, and my table-leg ankles. I don't exactly have cankles, so there is that. One time we brought my ring in to be cleaned, and the stones checked to make sure they were in tight. When we picked it up again, the girl looked at the size of the ring and the heaviness of the band and immediately tried to put the ring onto DH. No, sweetie. The gigantic ring is mine, thank you. She could have put it on her wrist, practically. I am sure her friends and collegues continue to laugh and have mirth at the story about the 'woman with the tree branches for fingers'.

Being female, and working in an office, and being a daughter-in-law, I get a lot of 'generic female gifts'. You know. Candles. Mugs with candy in them. Candles. Bath soaps. Candles. Oh, and gloves. Lots and lots of gloves. Nice gloves. Lady-like gloves. Gloves that would never fit these mits in a million years. I mean, I can diet and exercise and take inches off my waist but there is no cure for having gorilla hands (although they are not hairy, thank goodness). Sometimes if they are a large I can wedge my fingers in there, and be content to never bend my fingers while wearing them. MIL once bought me leather gloves, and got the men's by mistake. They are the only gloves that have ever fit. I used to keep those little gloves. It seemed wrong to throw them away. Then I started donating them to charity. After all, I am sure there are a lot of needy and homeless women out there with small hands.

Now. Knowing all this, one would think that if I decided to make something for myself - say mittens perhaps - that I would take into account the fact that I have huge fricken hands. That I would see the notation that it was for a woman's size M or small L and make the necessary adjustments. But nooooooooo. "There is a lot of ease with mittens". "Mittens are always loose, these will just be less loose". "They can't be THAT small". If one were to get gauge, the mittens would measure 8 inches around the widest part of the hand. That would barely go around my fingertips (did you think I was kidding about having sturdy fingers?). Yet still, I worked right on gauge, and other than going up a needle size or two, made no other changes. Isn't the first one beautiful?
Now. Ask me if I can get my hand in there.