I wear my satins like a lady, Strutter.

The last time I visited with you, I said something about updating the site every day in September. It didn’t happen, and my excuse is a good one. You see, I’ve been contending with some peculiar feelings since September 1, and it’s because of this:

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My very first album was Kiss Alive! and if I remember correctly, it was given to me for Christmas in 1975. Last week, on the morning of September 1, I pulled up the album and my 5-year-old brain (now 44 years old) remembered the lyrics AND the song order. (My brain is messed up in so many ways, but it has held on to the fact that “She” comes after “Parasite”. I’m so intrigued with the things that are gone and the things that remain.)

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I remember having such a crush on Peter Criss when I watched Kiss Meets the Phantom of the Park with my sister when I was eight years old. (That’s me on the left with the cardigan and turtleneck. My mom made the pants I was wearing.)

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I went to my very first KISS concert last week and Paul Stanley is now 67 and Gene Simmons is 70, and when Gene Simmons did the “God of Thunder” bloody mouth thing in the 70s, it was spooky because of Satan. Now it’s spooky because it smells like it could be a pulmonary embolism.

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Also, just so you know, Paul Stanley still sucks on his finger. I didn’t know how to react to it in the 70s, and I don’t know how to react to it now.

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So, I’ve become a little obsessed with KISS. Did you know that Paul Stanley was born without an ear? Did you know that his speaking voice sounds like this?

There are so many other things we could be talking about right now. I’m in the midst of a gnome knit-along. I’ve been on an eyebrow adventure. I’ve been knitting and watching Downton Abbey and I bought some overalls and I removed a birthmark from my leg using only a pair of scissors! (It’s not healing very well, so I may save that story until I’ve led it toward a happy ending.)

But also, this is happening.

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Thank you, Krystofer.

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These will be that and those will be this.

I quit my website for three weeks, but then I came back. And the first thing really is the first thing: Stephanie asked about this rainbow box of mini skeins.

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I’m going to choose a neutral color and make this cowl.

Also, Catherine asked for yarn/pattern matches, and here we go!

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Those four skeins will turn into one of these.

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These will be this.

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Those? This!

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This! (It’s already over halfway done.)

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Those will be this, and I’m crazy excited because the Fall KAL starts on Sunday, so I’ll definitely have the cardigan finished before December. The color is called Later, Gator! The sweater pattern is Elton. Obviously, this will be my Crocodile Rock Cardigan.

I’m thinking about daily Fluid Pudding updates in September to get back in the habit. I’m going to a KISS concert in five days. I’ve taken a liking to dark chocolate covered blueberries. I’ll be back sooner than you think.

Next to music, yarn is best.

I will not be seeing “The Art of Racing in the Rain.” I can’t even think about the book without feeling the face pain I get when I cry like a cheerleader, and I didn’t even read the book. (I read “Racing in the Rain”, which is the young adult version of TAoRitR. When I finished RitR, I had to close my bedroom door and do a quick Sob ‘n’ Nap.) This morning I watched an interview with the actors from the movie, and I could barely get through the interview without inflicting TMJD upon myself. I’m medicated to the point where I’m physically incapable of crying, and someday I’m going to blow up like a gigantic combustible teapot.

(Also: Mass shootings. I’m pissed. We should all be pissed. I’ve reached the point where I think things like, “Well, if I’m meant to die in a white guy terrorist attack, I’m meant to die in a white guy terrorist attack.” Thinking things like that used to be akin to “If I’m meant to die by slipping on the bathroom floor and falling forehead first onto the horn of a baby rhinoceros…” Anymore, it’s akin to “If I’m meant to forget my debit card when I go to the grocery store…”)

I’m back from Chicago and it may have been my happiest Stitches Midwest experience yet. We tried on sweaters and rubbed yarn against our necks and ate cheesecake and I said the F word a lot (always appropriately) in front of my mom because we’re buddies.

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Pictured above is the potential for four sweaters and three cowls. The three grey speckled skeins in the second column will be wound first so that I can dress like this in the fall:

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(Actually, I’ll probably put a long-sleeved shirt under the sweater and wear it with jeans so I can be a little Gilmore Girls about it.)

Not pictured above is the linen Christmas yarn that will enable me to look like this in a year or so:

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School starts tomorrow and we now have a freshman and a junior in the house. Let’s go ahead and call it fall, which means it’s time for marching band competitions, and Thanksgiving is right around the corner. I need to get started on that sweater.

Everywhere I go, damn! There I am!

Several years ago, I read an article about the glorification of busy and it stuck with me because at the time, I knew a lot of people whose constant gig was to beat their drums and blow their trumpets about how tied down they were.

Did I tell you that I’ve taken on a full-time freelance gig? It will fill my schedule through December and I love it completely. (It combines medical stuff and writing stuff, so all of those Grey’s Anatomy episodes are finally paying off!) The only problem? It’s keeping me busy. Jolly busy.

I’m not complaining. It’s just that I’ve now become one of those people who can’t do things because they’re grinding behind a computer screen with tight deadlines. Ah, but my friend Kelly recently posted a photo of a ring and it inspired the hell out of me. I now wear my freelance ring when I’m working (and also when I’m not working). Bird by bird.

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I’m leaving town on Friday to spend the night in Chicago with Tempe and my mom. It’s our eleventh trip to the yarn show and I’m ready to get whatever it takes to make this. Also, because it’s a thing to wear something you’ve made, I recently finished my Swoop. (It still needs to be blocked.)

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We have a bunch of frogs in our yard and a bunch of flies in the house. I’m trying to decide how to either get the flies out or bring the frogs in.

The Ben Folds book will be delivered to me on Tuesday. And so, Angie waits, Angie waits, Angie waits…

And what do you think they have hidden away in the cabinet cold of their hearts?

I knew this was a Magritte.

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I knew this was a Magritte.

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I had no idea this was a Magritte. It’s a ham sitting on a jacket in the sun, and it was painted during his périod vache, or “nasty style.” (I think it’s time for me to have a périod vache.)

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I knew this was a Mondrian.

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I had no idea this was a Mondrian. It’s an oil painting of a farm in Holland, and it was painted before he went all abstract on us.

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I fell in love with the Art Institute of Chicago on Sunday. We weren’t able to spend much time there, but our abbreviated tour was 45% of a funnel cake which is so much better than no funnel cake at all.

Because we were a little rushed, I fell into the tired habit of seeing the paintings I already know instead of exploring the things I don’t know.

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As we walked out of one of the modern art galleries, a docent asked if I had picked a favorite. “SO many favorites!” I said, afraid of giving the wrong answer. “What is YOUR favorite?”

“That’s easy,” he replied. “It’s de Kooning’s ‘Interchanged’.” He then asked if we wanted to see it, which we did, so he led us to this.

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I remembered walking past it a few minutes earlier and not giving it any attention. This time, I was totally in as the docent did his thing.

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Docent: The thing I love about de Kooning is that he can do whatever he wants, just like we can all do whatever we want. Not many artists feel comfortable with “I want to, I can, so I will.” Let me know when you see the horse. See? He wants to add a horse, he can add a horse, so he does add a horse. You want to, you can, so you do. It’s inspirational. Now, turn around and take a look at ‘Excavation.’

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Docent: The more you look at it, the more you are rewarded. With teeth. A dog. A bird.

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I walked away with a new favorite.

Another favorite? Reading things as if I’m in on a secret.

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Mine is not a harmless strain.

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Guess which little person I am? Here’s a hint: I haven’t left the country in the past 6,209 days, and I haven’t seen an errant puppy for at least three months.

That’s right, Encyclopedia Brown. AND, you know what this means, don’t you? It means that I probably ate something with poop on it.

So here we are.

(I now walk around with Clorox wipes in my holster. No one else is going to get a poop bug. At least not on my watch!)

((I’ll be fine.))

We’re halfway to Christmas Eve.

It was a big deal that the St. Louis Blues won their first Stanley Cup last week. In fact, it was a big enough deal that I went out and bought matching shirts for our family and we went to the (very crowded and crazy) parade.
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I’m not a fan of crowds where people are moving in different directions, but this crowd was a good crowd—a happy drunk crowd dressed in shirts that said things like “Finally!” and “I’m a Blues fan, Bitch!” We got home safely, but not before stopping at IKEA for veggie balls. The End.

This is my Swoop. I’m trying to finish it before our annual yarn trip in August. The two yarn colors are Big Bang and Intergalactic, so the tentative name for this project is Swoopy Intergalactic Big Bangs, and that reminds me of high school in the 80s.
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I’ve spent my entire life not liking purple or any variations of purple, mainly because I associate purple with terms like “bubble gum” and “panty hose.” (I also associate the number 7 with “panty hose.”) For the past few years, I’ve been drawn to purple. Purple is for sarcoidosis awareness, and one of my favorite people suffers from the disease. Purple was a friend’s son’s favorite color, and all combinations of purple and black make me think of him. On Friday I went to the St. Louis Pen Show with Tempe, and while there I fell in love with this pen. I then fell in love with this ink. Bubble gum and panty hose. Like a Troye Sivan song, but not really.

These are Latte pansies. I’m in love with them, too, but I’m not allowing myself to purchase any because I know how it goes when I have plants. Ah, but look. The plants in this photo will be alive forever. In this photo.
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I started working on a joy grid last week. I’ve added many more things since this photo was taken, but you get the picture. Literally.
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Put the right letters together and make a better day!

June is here and the high school seniors have graduated and parties have been (or are being) thrown. My high school graduation took place 31 years ago (also known as one Zac Efron ago), and I remember that night like this:

2255_1091643287287_547_nI wore a gold cap and gown with a blue satin thing around my neck that may have been for National Honor Society. I spent more than a reasonable amount of time Flock of Seagulling my hair around my cap. I maybe held a flower and I think I accompanied the choir. A lot of weird hugging took place after the ceremony, and then a few of us went out for Italian food and someone said something about finding lump in her breast.

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After dinner, those of us who went to the restaurant went back to a house to get ready for the all-night party that was being held at another house. I bought a floral strapless dress for the event (a scandalous move for me), but when I put it on I realized I didn’t have the energy to pull it off (figuratively) so I pulled if off (literally) and probably put on my Palmetto jeans and maybe a Forenza shirt that said “Forenza” on it.

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Lots of people drank at the party. I didn’t (Baptist), but I took a lot of photos (amateur) of people who did. Eventually, about a dozen of us (boys and girls) ended up crashing at yet another house. There was a fish tank and maybe vertical dark wood paneled walls. I woke up super early the next morning and drove to the next town to buy doughnuts for all of us, because the 18-year-old me was just like the 49-year-old me. (I love doing favors and providing pleasant surprises.) I think I took a few people home before I went home, and then three months passed before I packed up and moved into a dormitory.

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Five years after my Masterpiece Theater high school senior photo was taken, I threw a college graduation party for myself. I *did* drink at that one (beer!), and the details from that night (delightfully deplorable) will be kept between the seven of us who were there. And also Jesus.

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I would encourage you to drink and dress.

We have survived everything that life has offered us—the missed opportunities, the broken bones, the bad jobs, the mistakes, and the migraines. On Thursday evening, after surviving cheesecake and martinis, Tempe and I celebrated our fortitude with one of my favorite activities: Getting tipsy at the mall and trying on prom dresses.

This is one of the first dresses I tried, and it has a story to tell: Once upon a time, Julius Caesar wrapped his laurel leaf headgear around my waist and suddenly my chest looked like something that might inspire Bob Seger to write a song.

If I was invited to Adult Prom and maybe the theme was something like “Working On Our Night Moves in The House of Mirth” this next dress might be perfect. However, what you don’t know until I tell you right now is that I couldn’t get the damn thing to zip because I am NOT A JUNIOR-SIZED GIRL. One more thing: Check out the floor of the dressing room. I probably should have kept my shoes on.

I loved this blue dress because it had so many interesting layers. Like me. And the atmosphere. And lasagna. (I’m starting to dig the halter neck. I should maybe do some planks or something.)

…so then I took my turn. Oh, what a thing to have done. And it was all yellow.

I’ve heard way too many people (probably 4, which really is way too many) say, “When you try on your wedding dress, you’ll know it’s The One.” Okay. This blue dress with the sparkles and flowers and tiers (like a wedding cake, or a very sad person who can’t spell) made me think of Roxie Roker in The Jeffersons (She would have looked AMAZING in this dress.) and it was The One. It weighed something like 523 pounds and I HAD to try it on simply because it was the end of the night, and way too many people (probably 4, which really is way too many) have told me that the end of the night is the best time for lifting weights.

News: I am no longer growing out my hair. I wanted what I wanted and what I wanted was a haircut. Also: Welcome to the summer.