Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Crank Yankers

Mother Nature has been toying with us again. Happy Spring, everyone!

That little spring surprise turned out to be approximately 18" of heavy, wet snow that broke tree limbs, brought down power lines, and took out the local power station. Look at how little Dinah looks in comparison to the snow on our back deck:

Shortly after I posted my last blog entry, our power spluttered out and remained out for about two and a half days. I can take the dark all right, but a couple of days without heat and hot water (read: no hot coffee, no showers, and no wi-fi) are really more than I can stand. Every night was a three dog night, and so were the days. I insisted that Seamus lie down on my lap as much as possible. If I could have carried him around like a hairy, 60-pound hot water bottle, I would have.

My snowbird neighbors ended up having to move back into their camper for the duration. At least the camper had a generator, so they had lights, heat, and hot water. When I met up with the husband at the mailbox, he declared, "Next year we're coming back on May 1."

For fun (and to warm up), Greg and I ventured out to Wally World to buy a pair of hand-cranked lanterns. These puppies were the ultimate in retro-power; they even came with adapters to charge our cell phones. We cranked, and cranked, and lit up the house. We might have been frickin' freezing, but we sure had light. Too bad my fingers were too cold to do much knitting.

Easter Sunday is arguably Greg's busiest day of the church-organist year. He was so dismayed at the prospect of having to play the Easter services without having showered for a few days that he started wondering out loud who might have hot water, and who might let him shower. He nearly followed Dinah and me to Springfield for the , only for the pleasure of taking a hot shower in a heated room at the Red Roof Inn.

Bigger Than Slim Whitman!

Maybe it's because they live in a musical household, but all three of our dogs have theme songs, and they recognize them when we sing to them. (And you thought I only sang to Seamus during rally trials!)

Charlie's theme song is (no surprise here) "Charles in Charge." When Greg sings it to him, Charlie smiles and wags his tail. There's a dog who knows he's alpha.

Seamus has had a couple of theme songs in his time. For a while there, his song was "You Are My Bunny, Your Feet Are Funny" (to the tune of "We're in the Money"). At times he has also enjoyed an original tune, "Seamus, You're Gonna Be Famous." He's famous now, for sure.

Dinah currently has so many silly songs composed and sung in her honor that one of my friends has threatened to record an album of greatest hits. We've been through such immortal melodies as "Dinah Moe, Dinah Moe, going to the Beardie show" already. Right now, Dinah enjoys the first (and probably only) hip-hop "song" in the pack. With few apologies to the Pussycat Dolls, I've been singing "Don't-cha wish your pup-pies were as pret-ty as meeeeeee?"

Don't look for these to be sold on late night television any time soon.

The Busy Man

Greg has so much going on right now that I'm hard-pressed to be able to report it all without confusing or forgetting things. He's in the process of doing all of the following:

  • Finishing up the Brass Quintet (working title: Theme and Variations from "Ongiara"). If he gets it done with enough time to spare, the folks who will be premiering it will do so at Carnegie Recital Hall.
  • Getting parts together for a performance of Water by the Holyoke Symphony.
  • Coordinating the details of the recording session for the Sax Quartets CD.
  • Talking to the violinist who will be playing Clayton Runaround at the this June.
  • Putting the very final touches on Louis, Louis.

Stuff on the Needles

posted a picture showing both pairs of mittens that I knitted for her. I'm glad she had the presence of mind to do that, since I completely forgot to take pictures before boxing them up and shipping them off.

What a great coincidence that they should arrive on her birthday! (I stink at remembering birthdays. I thought hers was in April sometime, but the Post Office had my back!) At the time I sent them, I thought that mittens made a lame birthday present for someone born in the spring. Little did I realize that she'll be able to put them to good use this year!! (Stay in the South a little while longer, Sue! We have sun, but no warmth!)

My sister asked me to create something really, really girly-looking for her pink Motorola RAZR. (If you knew my sister, you'd understand how funny this request really is.) She's working at becoming a practicing vegan, but she asked for something that looked convincingly like angora. It turned out that I had just the stuff in my stash -- a leftover from a scarf I once made for a former co-worker -- and I whipped up a little rectangular pouch. With a suitably girly button for decoration and some snaps or Velcro to hold the thing closed, this thing ought to store her phone in hilariously sweet style.

Continuing education news: I've just signed up for a knitting class with Lucy Neatby in Fryeburg in mid-June. I'd been hoping that it would be a sock class, but this session covers multiple types of buttonholes in the morning, and flourishes in the afternoon. The class coordinator mailed me a copy of my homework assignment a few days ago. I need to create a small bunch of knitted samples to work on in class. Too bad Pam can't come out for her vacation until a couple of weeks later. (We plan to drive up toward Nova Scotia to see Lucy there, if she's back home by then.)


Pamela said...

See -- I told you you needed to come to California for a break from the weather!

Flymaine said...

The man and you can always come over to shower. And you can even have one of our guest rooms. The dogs are more than welcome, just be prepared for Tucker at his worst. We also WI-FI upstairs, so comeon over anytime!!

More snow is coming and power outages are expected, so I thought I would hurry up and post this!!

Pirate said...

Our weather here has been just as stupid. But I THINK we're over the worst of it now. Spring seems finally to be here to stay.

Barbara W. Klaser said...

More snow? Yeah, I think you need a California break.