Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Bear foot socks and a favour

First I will get to the knitting content- I actually finished a pair of socks that fit Ali. I am not going to go diving into the archives to find out when that last happened. This sock knitting went very smooth until I broke one of my Brittany Birch 2.5 mm needles. Seeing this was the second one in that size that I broke (the previous one snapped about three years ago) I decided I needed replacements. Brittany needles are great about replacing the snapped needles. My only problem with it is they no longer make a 7" 2.5 mm needle - only 5" so the two replacements are shorter. C'est la vie!

On to the socks
Bearfoot socks4
I got the yarn at the Knitters Fair in September and loved knitting with it. The yarn is a pleasure on the hands, being a wool:mohair:nylon blend so I am hoping it holds up well.

I knit the socks toe up, placing the gusset increases along the sole of the foot, an idea taken from Ted, although I kept them every other row.

Bearfoot socks1

Yarn: Mountain Colours Bearfoot
Needles: Brittany Birch 2.5mm
Pattern: Basic toe up sock pattern with heel flap, gusset stitches along bottom

Now onto the favour - I am not asking for money or a large part of your time. I just want you to read the story of Talca and Sari, and write a few letters expressing your feelings to the Judge and District Attorney and Police Chief involved in the case.

Sari and Talca were two rescued racing greyhounds, they were born in Ireland, raced in Spain and brought to the US when their careers were over. It was believed they were going to have a good life after being adopted by Kevin Schneider. However this was not to be the case :

Sari and Talca were adopted from Greyhound Friends, Hopkinton. GHFs adopts out hundreds of ex-racers to responsible, loving owners every year. In the group's almost twenty-five years of placing greyhounds nothing like this travesty has ever happened. Great care is given to each match; the adopter signs a contract that emphatically stipulates that the dogs have to be returned to GHFs no matter what the circumstances.

Reportedly, Talca and Sari were not provided with adequate food or water and they were in a severely emaciated condition. On October 27, Schneider drove to Killingly, CT. where he abandoned Talca. She was picked up by Animal Control and her microchip read.....traced to Spain and then to Hopkinton.........she is safe and recovering.

Sari was in much worse shape. After being abandoned by Schneider at a location in Rhode Island, Sari was taken into care by a local greyhound placement organization. She received veterinary care but died after two days. Sari only weighed thirty pounds when she was found. When she left GHFs she weighed between sixty-five and seventy pounds. Talca was adopted in May, 2007 - Sari in June, 2007. It is crucial that the public be aware that if they see animal abuse or neglect it is imperative that they contact the humane authorities who can help the animals....who have no voice or recourse of their own. Both the MSPCA and the ARL have anonymous tip lines.
In Massachusetts, cruelty to animals carries a maximum sentence of five years.

[from a press release put out by Greyhound Friends]

Schneider is scheduled for his next appearance in court on December 27. Your letters will help make sure that he is not allowed to plea to lesser charges.

Edward P. Deveau
Chief of Police
34 John "Sonny" Whooley Way
Watertown, MA 02472

Gerard T. Leone Jr.
Middlesex County District Attorney
40 Thorndike St
Cambridge, MA 02141

Hon. Gregory C. Flynn
First Justice
Waltham District Court
38 Linden Street
Waltham, MA 02452

For more information on this story please check out the site set up discuss the case.

Monday, November 19, 2007


or I guess I shouldn't have dropped that stitch back in June.

I have been wearing my entrelac socks, on a weekly basis since it has gotten cold (I only have 8 pairs of knit socks so they get worn often in the rotation), without a problem. They are KPPPM and have been through the washing machine 3 -4 times (I also handwash my socks). Monday morning however, I went to put them on.

My finger went through the fabric right below the cuff.



Careful analysis has revealed that I had dropped a purl stitch half way up the ribbing, and not noticing it, the stitch has slowly run down and is now releasing all the stitches in the dark blue square. I feel that I have a major repair project in my hands - Claudia's quick fix - which I have used often will not help me know. It would have helped in June, but alas I must reknit the cuff. I'll have to figure out if more drastic work needs to be done when I rip back that far.

I am just glad that I noticed it when I was putting the sock on and not part way through the day. The dark blue square would unravel completely if left to its own devices in the present state. I have already started unravelling the cast off edge of the cuff.

Progress in knitting has been slow anyway. The back of the cardigan is 2/3 done - and I have a sock for Christmas 1/2 done. Exciting.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Keeper's Christmas List

Ali's posted a Christmas list on his blog and it was mentioned that Keeper needed a Christmas list. Since I have very little blog fodder of late. I thought I might take this time to discuss his hobbies and what Keeper would like to get for Christmas (or any other day for that matter).

Keeper is a wonderful dog and has 6 things that he loves to do. Actually I really think this is all he does. So in the order of what I think his preferences are here are Keeper's hobbies:
  1. Eat - I have never seen him turn down food (Whoops, he did once when he was sick but that was for 1/2 day). He will taste treats and deem them to be too healthy/not close enough to meat to be worth eating. However, no matter how tired, sore or other feeling he doesn't like to miss a meal.
  2. Sleep - He may be more active than other greyhounds but that isn't saying much. Keeper doesn't like his sleep disturbed (unless it is for food).
  3. Going for walks: He has been known (rarely but has happened) to give up walks in favour of sleeping or to chew on bone. I do think though one of the the favourite things about walks is the fact that he gets a treat at the end.
  4. Getting pets - Keeper does not display his love of this (Keeper rarely wags his tail) and in the beginning it was difficult to tell if he actually liked getting pets. He especially wasn't sure about belly rubs, but now when you stop he gives you a look that can only be interpretated to mean "I didn't tell you to stop so start petting me again".
  5. Running - I think a lot of people thought this was going to be his number one activity. However many times we have gone outside to play and he has not been interested in wanting to run. However if another grey is running he will generally join in (unless he is sleeping or getting tummy rubs)
  6. Playing with stuffed animals- This involves running 1/2 the time and he is particular about what stuffies he will play with.
So this brings us back to his Christmas list
  1. Smoked trout, sardines or any other fish. Fish is his favourite meat, despite the fact that he can't run after them. (although he did like to swim...)
  2. Turkey necks - this is really a gift but leftovers - what else do you do with those giblets. They have the added bonus of cleaning his teeth. His teeth do get brushed, but that is tolerated since he gets a treat afterwards.
  3. Any treat that contains a significant amount of meat (I will request low chicken content and no rawhides as they upset his tummy although he loves them anyway) I could really make an entire list of just his favourite treats but I think we have covered his number one pastime sufficiently.
  4. A nice soft fluffy bed for outside. The ground is hard - so quite often in the summer I would be outside in the garden and he would be inside sleeping on a comfy bed. He is not stupid. Keeper has a couple of beds inside but this is never enough for a greyhound.
  5. Some more blankets to sleep under - or to fluff up if the bed isn't quite soft enough. He does like used blankets.
  6. A new stuffed animal, it has to talk not squeak. Keeper is very particular and doesn't play with any of the toys that squeak - only the ones that make other sounds "I'm Tessa Owl Hoo Hoo Hoo" or "Ribbit Ribbit". He wears the sounds out on these toys. The frog that he has that squeaks he won't even pick it up.