Friday, December 28, 2007

Ack! I've been tagged!

Kathleen at A Bag of Olives (who I must link back to) has tagged me for very introspective meme. Luckily, with the new year approaching, I'm in the mood for some introspection, so she caught me at the right time!

Today's theme is: write a letter to your 13-year old self. I have to tag 5 other people, too, who can follow suit or choose to ignore me.

Dear me at 13,

Everyone thinks that this age sucks, so know that you're not alone. Even those kids who act like they have it all together will look back on these years and cringe. Trust me: teenage angst is nothing new and everyone experiences it.

That being said, I know that a lot of your angst stems from being so different from your peers: your mouth is full of headgear, your family eats meals with chopsticks, and you still think stuffed animals are cooler than boys. Being normal is overrated, and quite frankly, boring. Keep on doing what you want and following your internal compass. And trust that gut!

Spend more time with your grandfather. Listen to all of his stories and ask him about his life. Remember these stories because very soon, he won't be able to remember them himself. When you visit him years later, remember how he is now. That's the real man.

Even now, you're still with me. When I'm outraged at the injustice around me, it is you I tap into to do something about it! Your knee-jerk honest responses to situations that needed more finesse have gotten me into trouble on more occasions than I care to remember. However, take comfort in knowing that I have no regrets about my life (it's not my style), so take some risks and encourage those you love to do the same.


P.S. "Our" teeth are still straight, so that torture device in your mouth is worth it.


Your turn! I'm tagging the following bloggers:
  1. TofuNinja from Perform or Go Home
  2. LeannIAm from I Should've Bred Iguanas
  3. Caroline from LabPuggleChi
  4. Greenkozi from The Macinator
  5. Harleymom from The Chronicles of Chuck
As I mentioned before, no worries if this is not your thing!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Knitting is in the Blood

My brother, the WWE freak also known as TofuNinja, spent a few days with us. I convinced him that he had to learn how to knit, and guess what? He agreed!

Here's his first swatch:

Pretty good for his first try, eh? Once he got the hang of it, his tension looked great and his motions were fluid.

He must be related to me because as soon as he knit the swatch, the furmiliation began. Here's a sneak peek:

For more pictures of our furmiliated animals, you can check out his post here.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

New Toy!

Can you guess what it is?

No, it's not LSD. It's not Photoshop. It's a new camera! And this new camera has a steep learning curve - I'm only halfway through the user's manual (I had to use it just to snap my first picture!) and I have a taken a ton of pictures that look like I'm on a bad acid trip.

As always, Mingus is not impressed.

To be continued...

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Infestation Continues...

More and more mini sweaters are popping up at the wildtomato household. Mingus seems to be the main carrier.

This new sweater, the Mother of All Mini Sweaters, just popped up today. I knit it on size 5 needles using Cascade 220.

Vespa and Greaseball continue to recover from their recent sweater illness. Yet again, the cyclops green monster makes an appearance.

Some more gift knitting is complete: a recycled sari silk scarf. The pattern is from Double Helix.

My initial thought was to make a simple garter stitch scarf, but two things kept me from doing it: I was afraid I'd fall asleep and a garter stitch scarf would have been too heavy because the silk singles are dense.

Although it looks good on Vespa, and she was quite fond of it, I think it will make it to its intended person.

I have one leftover skein of the sari silk, and I don't know what to do with it. The stuff is pretty, but oh what a pain it was to knit with it! This single plied yarn was not a consistent diameter, and there were several times I was afraid that it would snap because it got so thin. That funkiness is what gives it its charm, though, and in the end, I liked the final product.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

We have an infestation!

It started with Mingus. I started to get worried when he wouldn't even budge for a cookie. Clearly, something was wrong.

Then, Vespa started showing symptoms. Her first outbreak appeared on her forehead, too. She was worried.

Very, very worried.
Mingus was getting worse. He was becoming more and more lethargic. Not even promises of walks and dog parks could stir him from his funk.

The vile disease proved to be a particularly dangerous when it crossed species and started to attack my cats. I thought I did a good job quarantining the animals, but this virus was ruthless and could not be stopped!

I even started to have symptoms. Clearly, something had to be done.

Since there was no cure, the virus started to mutate. It sprouted a hood. Serious in the front...

Party in the back!

This particular mutation was first spotted on Fifty-Fifty's nose.

What to do? They've sprouted hangers and now they're everywhere!

They took over the Christmas tree...

And even my carnivorous plant.

If you would like an infestation in your house, go here for instructions.

Happy holidays!

Friday, December 14, 2007

The One-Eyed Monster

Green monster, in the land of the blind, the one-eyed monster is king. I hope these words give you comfort.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Long Awaited Vacation Pictures, part 1

My apologies to those friends who check this blog in anticipation of vacation photos and don't really care about the goofy pets, food, or knitting. First of all, this must have been torture for you! Secondly, um, why are we friends again?!? (Just kidding... Or am I?) Your not so subtle emails asking about the trip and the photos, plus my embarrassment at almost having passed the 1-month return mark and only talking (incessantly, I might add) about the wonderful food I ate, has prompted me to dig out my trip journal for this recap.

Before we being, a little background: my father-in-law served in the Vietnam War (known as the American War in Vietnam) from 1971-1972. Recently, he felt a little tickle to return to Vietnam because he found the country beautiful and the people friendly. He offhandedly mentioned this to the boy and I, and in a matter of minutes, we all knew that it would happen. This trip has been planned (in the we're going sense, not the logistical sense) for over 2 years!

The original manifestation of this trip was going to be an epic bike tour of SE Asia, but finding a chunk of time for any sort of trip became a scheduling nightmare, so the trip was whittled down to 3 weeks in Vietnam and Thailand. We also punted the idea of a guided tour, since we felt confident that Lonely Planet, a sense of adventure, and sheer luck would keep us afloat. We tried to learn a little Vietnamese, too, but never got further than "Hello!" (Side note: saying "hello" to a woman in Vietnamese means figuring out if she is older or younger than you, so it was tricky, tricky, tricky.)

Let's begin!

Okay, so this is actually in the Taipei airport, but isn't it cute? Bok choy with adorable little aphids. I tried to find a stuffed animal or something like this in the surrounding stores, but I had no luck.

When we arrived in Hanoi, we were greeted by a boisterous, smoggy, yet charming city punctuated with honking 24 hours a day. Our guest house, Thu Giang, was a located in an alley in the Old Quarter and protected by the house cat.

The rooms were small, but the idea was to only sleep in them anyway. And for $15 (including the much needed air-conditioning), they were a good value.

Since it was late morning when we arrived and we needed to stay awake to minimize jet lag, we took a walk to Hoan Kiem Lake and Thap Rua (Tortoise Tower).

The Vietnamese have four sacred animals (tortoise, dragon, lion, phoenix), and these animals manifest in statues and monuments through the country.

My yarn radar must have been on, because we found this store right away. Amazingly, I did not buy any yarn. I blame jet lag.

As I've mentioned before, crossing the street was a harrowing affair. One must go steady and slow because doubling back, changing pace, or running across a street was a recipe for a broken bones. Drivers here try to anticipate your next move, which is entirely dependent on you not stopping and screaming "OH MY GAWD, I AM GOING TO DIE!" like I was tempted to do on many occasions.

Navigating around motorbikes was a special challenge in Vietnam because, just like many bike riders in the United States, motorbikes did not follow the traffic laws. They would ride up onto sidewalk and run red lights, the whole time peppering no one in particular with honks.

One thing I really loved in Vietnam was that everyone and everything was sized perfectly, for me at least. Here, I'm a shrimp! I am under 5-feet tall, but I still TOWERED over many Vietnamese women and men. The boy and his dad were giants here and could never shake the "bull in the China shop" feeling.

Here's proof of the boy's giantness in Vietnam. Sure, he has big feet anyway, but the 4-flights of stairs we had to take to our guest house room were particularly harrowing for him.

Hanoi is dense. Dense with people, dense with shopping and sight seeing, and dense with food. Don't come here expecting to find an idyllic, quite street on which to take a leisurely walk (although, the market below came close for a few minutes).

This is the night market that only happens on Friday nights. Looking for underwear, a pet bird, and some HVAC ducting? You'll find it here.

The one touristy thing we did was to watch the water puppet show. I had to drag the boy to the show, since he was expecting something campy and horrible. It turned out to be well worth the $1.50 ticket price, and then some. There was live Vietnamese folk music, beautiful costumes, and these intricate and slightly creepy (that is probably just my personal hangup) puppets performed jerky back flips in the air and swam in the water.

After two days in Hanoi, we were ready to move on to something more peaceful. Hence, Ha Long Bay.

To be continued...

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Christmas Photo Outtakes

Christmas bores Mingus.

"Look here! Dogs, look at me! Look at the treat!"

"If I'm a really good dog, Santa will bring me more meth!"

Well, Mingus is smiling, but Vespa looks worried. She's probably stressing out about all that Christmas shopping she still needs to do. Also, how did the green monster get in that photo?!?

"Mingus! I said STAY! Get your fluffy butt back here right now!"

Testing out the lights.

The tree. It will probably be devoid of leaves by the time Christmas rolls around thanks to happy dog tails and cats who eat pine needles.

I actually do have some knitting to post, but today is a lazy day. Again.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Heeeeere's Fifty!

Sheesh! I post some random pictures in an effort do a quicky blog post that I think doesn't need text, and everyone has questions and demands!

That kitten is not mine, and he isn't even a kitten anymore. The last I heard, he was over 20 pounds! My friend, who volunteers for Fix Our Ferals, was fostering him and she wanted me to take some photos for his adoption page. He didn't have a name at the time, and we called him The Sh*t because he did things like this:

Since that photo wasn't going to warm the hearts of potential adopters, I made him mug for the camera.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...