My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.



It has probably not escaped your notice how blah my blog has been lately. I do seem to have lost my blogging mojo lately.

I do go through these phases of bloggy malaise from time to time. I went through a phase of knitty malaise this past weekend as well.

The KOARC looked on in mild astonishment as I threw down my poor sock-in-progress and said (for no good reason) “Stupid worthless %$*&-# sock!” (I did pick it up and apologize to it later.)

I have absolutely no excuse for not having this pair of socks complete at this point. But I am close to completion.

Tangled Vines Sock 091007

Tangled Vines Sock 091007

Hopefully my mojo will return soon. There are more socks I have that I want to knit before I move on to something else. (I have even less mojo for things other than socks).

Maybe I’ll just blame it on the weather. It’s still hot and humid and I am so ready for it to be autumnal!!

In the meantime, here is a Lucy story. If you don’t like cats, just click away now.

We always have chicken for dinner on Friday night. Approximately 15-20 minutes before it comes to the table, Lucy positions herself beside the KOARC’s chair — she’s no dummy. She knows he’s a soft touch when it comes to treats.

So we’re having dinner, and the KOARC is saving the choicest tidbits to offer to Lucy, one at a time. Lucy indicates her readiness for another tidbit of chicken, so the KOARC tosses a bit down to her. Somehow, it ends up caught in her tail.

Lucy spends some time circling around: “Huh? I smell the chicken? Where is it?”

In the meantime, the KOARC is parting the fur on her tail, looking for the chicken. Lucy is giving him the over-the-shoulder grimace: “Why are you messing with my tail, Daddy? Don’t you know that we have an emergency? There is a piece of chicken missing!”

I catch sight of the chicken stuck in her tail. “Look! there it is!” I exclaim helpfully.

The KOARC gets Lucy’s Zoom Groom and starts combing her tail. Lucy is further nonplussed. “Daddy, focus! No time for grooming! Find my chicken!”

Finally, the piece of chicken is retrieved from the deepest darkest jungle that is Lucy’s tail fur.

We spend the rest of the evening calling Lucy “Chicken Tail.” She pretends not to notice.

Lucy Sez:

You see what I put up with here? It’s a good thing there are nice people who give me new toys!

Lucy 091007

Lucy 091007


  1. What was up with cats this weekend? I came downstairs yesterday to find one of our (pregnant) barn cats lying in the smack dab center of my entry-way room. She’s NEVER in the house and how in the world did she get in? She just raised her head, looked at me as if to say, “well, hello there. Did you have to wake me from my nap?” Talk about startled. At least she wasn’t giving birth there.

  2. oh,no! not the sock-ui! (like ennui, but refers specifically to socks) the weather is changing, so hopefully your malaise will pas quickly! lovely soks, though! can’t wait for the pattern! tres amusing lucy story! chicken tail!

  3. Debra in NC says:

    Oh man, I can certainly understand your desire for autumn to show itself soon! It’s been so hot here that it’s all I can do to even pick up a sock to knit, let alone anything else. It’s just too hot to even think about knitting…….I still knit though, but I only get a row or two in before I’m stopping, catching myself in mid-thought of cooler, more comfortable days. I started a sweater for dh about 1 1/2 years ago, but who am I fooling, it doesn’t get cold enough here for a sweater. At most he’d get maybe a day or so per winter season of wearing it…… it’s been put on the back burner. Hey, maybe if we all just think “cool” thoughts good ol’ Mother Nature will humor us?????

    Lucy dear, you’re a cutie! Please don’t feel alone in being fooled by delicious food you can smell but cannot find, my dear dog Angel has had this very same thing happen to her too, and while I do take some pleasure in watching her go through the emergency, I do help her find her missing treats. And yes, I apologize to her for any distress I may have caused her. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. We had a cheese emergency this weekend . . . vanished bit of provolone and four animals who could smell it but not quite get at it. *grin*

  5. Calvin spent the weekend completely thrilled that I’d found his favorite toy that had been missing for a month (remarkably similar to Lucy’s new one, but mouse shaped with a tail). But pissed that I’ve taken to hiding it when I’m not home to keep an eye on it’s whereabouts. When it’s out, he’s taken to carrying it around in his mouth along with his second favorite toy. It’s like he can’t decide what he wants more. He’s a strange cat. Not the brightest of the bunch.

  6. I say go with the slump/malaise for a bit. Sometimes it’s better not to fight it.

    Great Lucy story- poor kitty- so close!

    Our weather is split- warm days (70s-80s) and cool nights (30s-40s). Magpie is getting ready for cool weather by burrowing under the covers in the morning. Still too warm during the day/early evening to sit on my lap though. Hmmmph.

  7. PICAdrienne says:

    Perhaps you are desiring a slightly larger project than a sock, at least to work on part of the time. Sixteen pairs of socks in less than three months could cause some dissatisfaction with the whole process, even when creating your own (beautiful) patterns for the different socks. Maybe it is time to whip out a pair of your generic toe up socks with a picot edge.

    Lucy honey, you need to be patient with us humans. The KOARC may have not SEEMED to understand the issue, but did understand your distress. Why he didn’t give you another tidbit whilst retrieving the missing piece, I don’t understand. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. "Hawthorne" (the cat) says:

    My goodness, Lucy, I can understand why you’d give your support staff “the look”. Chicken tail, indeed! I give both “the look” and “the paw” (feline verison of the middle finger) when my support staff calls me *whisper*Princess Fluffykins. Oh, the indignity! You SO deserve more respect.

    (Hawthorne’s human is looking forward to the cooler weather, too — these warm nights are so uncomfortable and make it hard to get a solid stretch of zzz’s. Hawthorne and her brother Edgar don’t seem to notice, they can nap like champs anytime!)

  9. I too lost my knitting mojo all summer. Too much heat (100 degrees and no air conditioning) and smoke (so bad we were advised to stay inside as much as possible). But with Labor Day came an autumnal feast! The weather cooled and I finished 7 WIPs over the Labor Day weekend!!!!!! Progress is being made on several new projects.

    I will now go outside and fan some air eastward. Perhaps it will reach you in a couple of days.

  10. Oh what a great Lucy story! I can sympathize with all three of you as Perry P’s got a fluffy, dense, tail where things occasionally hide. I just hope Lucy understands that we’re not laughing at her, but at the feeble attempts to solve difficulties mounted by her humans (daddy in particular).

  11. That is a funny story. My dog is part poodle and subsequently has ‘poodlee’ hair on her legs and tail. She loves pasta and sometimes we toss her a strand of pasta. Once in awhile it lands on her fur and sticks there like velcro. Then she dances around trying to get it off of her If she so she can eat it.

  12. Everyone runs out of mojo… it’s time to take a well-deserved break.
    Today I received my Loopy Ewe shipment, including several of your patterns, as well as yarn of course. Thank you for the lovely, well-written patterns with clear instructions and great illustrations!

  13. Wendy- Shall I make room for you on Funk Island? It’s not a very fun place to visit.

    I hope Lucy lives down the “chicken tail” moniker.

  14. I don’t think it’s been boring at all. I’m sure you’ll have so much to say when October comes, when you start to buy new yarn.

  15. we’re experiencing a preview for autumn up here in northcentral WI. last week, it was in the low 80’s. today, it hovered around 50. brrr. might have to *turn on the heat* tonight.

    hope your knitting/blogging funk goes away. considering how much you’ve been doing this summer, you’ve probably earned some downtime anyway.

    enjoying seeing your socks progress and the gratuitous Lucy pics.

  16. oh my! The Lucy story had me laughing so hard. I can just picture it!

  17. Dear Wendy,
    Can I ask a non-sock related question? Is there a good subsitute for Rowan Kidsilk Haze?

  18. That’s okay, sock malaise happens to everyone. You just finish that sock and take a break from the sock knitting. We won’t mind. Really!

    They are gorgeous, though.

  19. As long as there are pictures of Lucy, we’ll be back.

    And it was in the low 60s (and rainy) today here in Iowa – maybe it will drift your way!

  20. Just to let you know that I took the words of my knitting idol to heart and got me some of that WEN cleansing conditioner. I figured I would try the sweet almond mint as I can’t handle cucumber anything. My hair looks great and I get clear sinuses to boot. Many thanks for sharing a great product.

    Chicken Tail…awwww poor kitty.

  21. Hmmmm… Astabeth thinks you should finish the current pair and then stop knitting socks? Was her guess 17 perhaps?

    I sure hope Lucy did get more chicken after the tail ordeal and name-calling she had to endure!

  22. New Jersey Laura says:

    Must be low knitting kharma week. Mine’s lost with yours. Let me know if you find it.

  23. I love those green socks, they are luscious! There’s something about the way the green stripes one way and the pattern the other, but mostly I love those fat green stripes.

    What we have now isn’t lack of mojo or bad karma, or anything but the dreaded ragweed season! All we can do is wait for frost.

  24. You’ve been cranking out the socks and patterns nonstop. I was wondering when you would “pause”. Of course, I realize that there is a lot of life tucked in there here and there that aren’t recorded on your blog, so the picture in my mind of “Wendy’s Sock Factory” isn’t quite right.

    Maybe a pair of the new Harmony wooden needles from KnitPicks would spice things up a bit? Uh, make that two pair, as you are knitting with two circulars…

    Cute Lucy story. My pup panics when she can’t find that tiny little tidbit that “might” have just dropped on the floor. Heaven forbid it is on her tail or something! And her tail isn’t nearly as beautiful, or fluffy, as Lucy’s!

  25. I love the tail story! We had a tortoiseshell cat (a stray we found) for a long time with the hugest, fluffiest tail ever. The really odd thing was that she could lie like a lump on your lap for (literally) hours, but her tail would twitch. If you held her tail still, the whole rest of her would twitch. We came to the conclusion that her tail was actually a parasitic being living off of her energy, which is what gave her the uncanny ability to lie like a lump for longer periods than any other feline, ever. We called it the Symbiotic Butt Beast.

    Here’s to the Return of the Mojo!

  26. Do you know the music to “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown?”
    If not, this will mean nothing, but as soon as I heard Chicken-Tail, I heard in my head, to the tune of “Suppertime”–
    “Chicken-Tail! Oh, it’s Chicken-Tail! Yes, it’s Chick-Chick-Chicken-Tail, cutest little tail in town!”
    (or substitute fluffiest tail, yummiest tail, etc. , etc.)
    Some sort of mojo will return — maybe it will be spinning! Or more lace! Or who knows what! But pain / not feeling like yourself sucks the mojo right out.
    Did you ever use the ‘get out of jail free’ yarn card? Maybe you need a yarn transfusion!

  27. I just have to ask, is that a ring off of a milk jug in the last pic of Lucy? We have a cat that used to LOVE playing with those milk rings. To the point that we’d toss one down the tile hallway, the cat would go slipping and sliding to get it, trot back with it in his mouth, and drop it at our feet. The closest thing to “fetch” that a cat will do, I think.

  28. I am of the opinion that you don’t need an excuse for not having finished a knit. Unless it’s a gift that is overdue that is. Sometimes it’s good to take a break. ๐Ÿ™‚

  29. perhaps you are slowing a bit because you know you are fast approaching the guess some of us made for your sock progress! someone is using a Jedi Mind Trick on wendy!

  30. I’m totally with you re: the weather! I know VA is technically a southern state and all, but I have this ridiculous expectation of chilly autumn weather as soon as the first leaf turns yellow and falls from my cherry tree. (which was last week) I am, as yet, disappointed.

  31. Truffles my Siamese will every once in a while get something stuck on her. She is very polite about asking and waits patiently for her Daddy to fix her a plate. She love hot cheese and it will stick if dropped on her in the wrong place. It will drive her nut until she gets it.
    Umm take a break…………… will drive you nuts not finishing a project and you will be back at work on it in no time. And you feel so happy you will be able to start planning your next project! ๐Ÿ™‚

  32. Theresa in Italy says:

    I laughed till I cried at the story of Lucy Chicken Tail. Too funny! Happens to our dog all the time, and he’s much bigger than Lucy, so more fur to dig through and harder to keep still.

    My knitting mojo, which had gone missing most of the summer, turned up briefly when we had a cold snap last week. Now the temperature’s going back up and guess what? I don’t want to work on my sock, either. Totally weather-related.

  33. As far as I’m concerned, you don’t have ‘enough’ Lucy stories on your blog!

  34. Lucy may be ‘poo free but not chicken free, huh? ๐Ÿ™‚

    Speaking of which, there is hair available for your perusal now!

  35. Poor Lucy. Chicken Tail! When we had a long-furred cat, she got her tail caught on a rosebush. When my husband freed her, she thanked him by sinking her teeth into his hand. At least Lucy can tell chicken from people hand.

  36. too funny.. and I can so imagine that was EXACTLY what she was thinking!

  37. Ah, blogging malaise. I know it well. Probably you need to play hooky for a day or two. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Poor Lucy. Chaos can completely sympathize and says, “Hey! At least no one put a bib on you!”

  38. You know, you are in a lot of pain, and that makes it hard to keep a perky outlook on a lot of things. Sometimes the socks are a good distraction, and sometimes they become a focus for all the irritation at the things in life you can’t control. Or at least that’s how it works for me.

    I am in a blog production phase, thinking about writing tips for teaching knitting, and am thrilled that after over a dozen pairs of socks in a row, I got back to working on my nice surplice top in the nice organic cotton. It was SO hard to stop knitting socks, especially considering my Loopy Ewe backlog!

    Take care of yourself and let yourself be self-indulgent occasionally. It feels good. Just don’t make it a habit!

  39. As far as I am concerned, you can stop knitting socks until the SOS is over. I guessed 17 for the number you would complete and if you continue, I am obviously out of the pickins’!!
    Hope you get your mojo back but relax, it will return

  40. I read “knitty malaise” as “kitty malaise.” LOL! There can be none of that with Ms. Lucy around! Funny, funny story.

  41. When you’re hurting, you often can’t concentrate on things, or become annoyed easily. We all have to let go sometime, and I’m sure the sock understands that you weren’t really annoyed with it.

  42. Heat and Humidity: the Evil Twins. It’s enough to sap anyone’s knitting mojo. Your blog is always interesting even if you don’t think so.

  43. Lucy…
    The Meezer can sympathize with owner’s silly behavior…
    I’m sooooooooo glad you got your pieces of chicken and you’re right, it’s not fair to call you “Chicken Tail” – the nerve of some owners, right, hon?

  44. This too shall pass.
    There is an ebb and flow in life. Enjoy it both ways.
    What goes up, must come down.
    Can’t think of anymore homilies. Brain has turned off. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Keep up the great work! Slow IS an acceptable speed, even if you’re not used to it. Stop is OK, too. Hang in there.

  45. Oh, poor Lucy, but that is too funny. My two dogs help each other out in those situations. Actually with two dogs those situations don’t develop.
    I think the person with the closest guess for the “how many socks will Wendy knit” contest is somehow messing with your mojo.

  46. Lucy –
    We Rags have to stick together. Our tails are a thing of beauty! Those humans just don’t understand how much time we spend everyday getting it to look purr-fect. Just be careful if they try to toss you a piece of American cheese. If that gets in your tail it will melt into it and you won’t believe what Mom had to do to get it out! BE CAREFUL!

  47. I’ve been on a sock downturn lately too. I’ve had one sock sitting there just past the heel for a week, normally I would’ve finished the pair in the time it’s taken me to get this far on the first one. Not sure why, usually SSS isn’t a problem for me, but this one pair is just “ugh!”

  48. Awww chicken tail! No blah, I think of it more as sock universe!

  49. Hi Wendy!

    I thought your title post was referring to your inner-Canadian – I’m sorry to hear it’s something much less fun.

    (Frequent lurker, new commenter)


  50. Wendy – before you get too hard on yourself I would check and see what the side of effects are of some of the medications and/or treatments that you have been using.

    There are many medications that list irritability or lethargy as side effects. However, even without medication just not feeling your best can do that do you.

    Thank you very much for blogging for your fans; even when it must be an effort for you.

  51. our “chicken” cat is jimi. he ADORES chicken to the point that after we eat dinner, we either have to take the trash out, or have a brand new bag in the can, to keep him out of it. i do share tiny bits with him (we usually try not to feed them people food too much, but ya know how that goes), and sometimes he’s willing to leave the trash alone at that point. it’s well enough known around here that my son just a utomatically takes the trash out after a chicken dinner, lol!