Archive for the ‘Singing’ Category

I’ve been terribly remiss

And absent, I know. Please believe me when I say that it was not deliberate! I have thought about you frequently since my last post, but haven’t found a spare moment to pull my thoughts together sufficiently to justify a whole blog post.

A gratuitous kitty-in-a-box photo to distract you from the lack of new project photos in this post.

A gratuitous kitty-in-a-box photo to distract you from the lack of new project photos in this post.

And I know you’re wondering if I’ve been crafting. Alas, the answer is (mostly) no.

I have done a bit of sewing. In fact, I made 7 matching aprons this past week, but I don’t think I took a picture of them. Mea culpa. It’s kind of a blog sin to make things and not take pics, isn’t it? Still there’s time, as I will see those aprons 4 days a week for the next three weeks.

You see, I was asked to join the cast of our local community theater’s production of Les Misérables, and we opened this week, with three more weeks of performances… and the aprons are part of the costuming!

I’d auditioned for the play… and not been cast.

Then, three weeks into the show’s rehearsals, the director contacted me and asked if I wanted to step in to replace an ensemble* member who’d had to drop out. Um, yeah, thanks!

That was about a month ago.

The three weeks of rehearsal flew past (although it didn’t always feel like it in the moment), and we opened this past Thursday night!

There are 5 shows a week (Thursday night, Friday night, Saturday matinée, Saturday night, and Sunday matinée) for the four weeks of the run.

So my next three weeks are going to be pretty full ones, between those shows and rehearsals with my wench troupe and with my madrigal group. Oy!

So. Much. Fun!

When I get photos of those aprons, I’ll post them for you.

And if I ever knit anything again (you know I will… eventually!), I’ll post about that, too.

In the meantime, please forgive my severe slackenbloggen. I still love you!

* As a member of the ensemble, I play 7 different characters, with 8 costume changes: an innkeeper’s wife, a poor mother, a prostitute, a drunk woman in a tavern, a beggar, a revolutionary, and a wedding guest… then I change back into my tavern costume for the finale. Whew!

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Since last I updated (a million years ago, I believe, although I haven’t done the math), I haven’t knit a thing.

OK, technically, I guess I have knit – or half-knit – a thing, but I’m going to frog it, so I’m pretty sure it doesn’t count.

I wanted to get in on WWKIP day/week before it passed, so I decided to knit a toddler-sized version of a doll-hat pattern I found in my stash. The name escapes me now, so hang on just a minute…

Here’s a kitty picture to occupy you while I fetch my project from the car:

If they fits, they sits... or something like that.

If they fits, they sits… or something like that.

Found it! The pattern is called Eyelet Beret. It’s by Deb Denair of Debonair Designs. It’s so cute… and it’s available free on ravelry.com. Just click on the pattern’s name in the 2nd sentence of this paragraph. Her designs are made to fit 18″ dolls, specifically those in the American Dolls series. Anyway, this particular beret design caught my eye a year or so ago, and I’ve been planning to make it… eventually.

When the last day of WWKIP 2014 rolled around and I still hadn’t knit a stitch anywhere, I decided to take advantage of a two-hour car ride to start this hat. In truth, I had every reason to think I’d finish the hat before the end of the returning two-hour car ride, given my now-decades of knitting experience and the relative simplicity of the charming pattern.

However… the knitting goddess was not being reasonable.

True, I had ignored her for months.

Also true, I was modifying the pattern to be larger…. something I’ve done many times in the past, although usually with a bit of math written out to back up my changes.

And also also-true, I was changing it from a knit-flat pattern to an in-the-round pattern… something else I’ve done many times in the past, with no difficulties.


This time, I knit for an hour or so before deciding my calculations (in my head, of course) were off somewhere… or my gauge (which I didn’t swatch, of course) was wonky… so the hat was going to be too big.

No problem, says I. I am no stranger to curative properties of a timely frogging, after all.

I ripped out the WIP and started again, this time carefully noting (in my head again, of course) the changes to my original modifications (still in my head, of course).


So I’ll be ripping the poor thing out again, only a little daunted.

Perhaps just daunted enough that I’ll write out my modifications next time… and take notes of any on-the-fly changes I make.

So, not knitting, but I have been sewing.

Back in July, I finally stopped procrastinating and not just because it was the day of the show in which i was to wear them and made a pair of bloomers for Cupcake, my medieval faire alter ego! My group, Just Desserts, was performing at a local club, The Midnight, and my old bloomers were worn out and falling apart. I’d stockpiled some bloomer-destined fabric back in the early spring, and with only 7 hours before showtime, I got serious and started sewing.

True to form, I’d tempted the sewing goddess by not starting sooner, then by not making sure I had all of my supplies (elastic cut to the right length for my calves, I’m talkin’ about you!) before I took off with the almost-finished bloomers to meet the other wenches and start getting ready. “Oh, no problem that they’re not really finished! I can quickly thread in these two elastic pieces in the leg casings and stitch them closed,” said I… only to discover (when I was far from home and without my stash of notions) that one of the pieces was about 3 inches shorter than the other, which made it about 3 inches too short to fit without cutting off the circulation to my foot.

I made a down-and-dirty desperation decision (yay, alliteration!) to use a ribbon on that leg, just for that performance, so the fabric would gather appropriately. But ribbon is not elastic, and that leg drooped. I’m not sure if any else noticed, but I sure did, mostly because it felt all wrong.

After the show, once again at home, I replaced the ribbon with elastic, and the bloomers were truly finished.

Here’s how they look (on a hanger):



That photo makes the pirates’ hats look kind of purplish, so how ’bout a closeup of the leg casing and fabric:

Avast, ye landlubbers!

Avast, ye landlubbers!

I also sewed two tablecloths for an author-friend of mine to use at her author appearances.

She chose the fabrics and trims, and I supplied the labor. Each turned out about 8 ft long and 3.5 ft wide, simple rectangles with trim on one long edge.

Here’s a closeup of the striped one I made first:

Why, yes, there is a blue ribbon on that grey stripe!

Why, yes, there is a blue ribbon on that grey stripe!

And here’s a closeup of the second one, which is both my and the author’s favorite:

Love that sweet brown and pink trim!

Love that sweet brown and pink trim!

And here’s a shot of the second one, in the real world:

Here's one: in use... and in need of ironing!

Here’s one: in use… and in need of ironing!

And yesterday, I “finished” three pair of wench’s bloomers! I say “finished,” because the actual sewing is done on all three, but only one is ready to wear. That would be the ones I made for my sister wench, Tira McSu. It is, surely, a complete coincidence that these were also finished at the last minute on the same day they were to be worn in a performance. (We were one of the acts in a benefit show to raise awareness and funds for a local domestic-violence shelter and similar programs.)

I didn’t have Tira at my house when it was time to fit the elastic to the legs and the waist, so I packed up some sewing supplies and took them with me. Once again, I almost blew it, as I had not included a sewing needle in said supplies. (I know!) Luckily, it took only a couple of minute of frantic searching to find one in the house where we were getting ready, so the bloomers did get finished. The hand-stitching details (sewing the leg casings closed, slipstitching down the space in the waistband that the elastic was threaded through) did not, as I ran out of sewing time before we had to head out to our venue, but those little things can wait.

As a result, I did not take a photo of them.

I do, however have a photo of the fabric, taken while I was trying to sew it. As you can see, Gandy (i.e., Gandalf the Grey) was helping me sew, but you may need to click-to-embiggen to see the fabric print better:

"Not like that, silly! You forgot to put the legs right-sides-together!"

“Not like that, silly! You forgot to put the legs right-sides-together before stitching!”

The other two pair still need to have elastic fitted into their legs and ribbons in their waistbands (not elastic, so they can be worn by whichever wench wants to, waist measurements notwithstanding), then they need to assume the clothes-hanger-on-the-door photography position and smile for the camera. Once that’s done, I’ll post them, along with some adorable kitty-helper photos I took during the marathon sewing session yesterday.

Till then, I hope your summer has been all you’d hoped. And as temperatures start to become more fall-like and the kiddies start back to school in some parts of the world, I wish you smooth transitions.

Later, kittens!

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I haven’t knit a thing in the last couple of months, although I carry yarn and needles with me virtually everywhere. I have, however, kept quite busy. Mostly reading and working and hanging out with the family and kitties.

I’ve also had a wench rehearsal or two, and in fact we have a performance scheduled for tonight at a local downtown bar/eatery*. I am so excited! I love performing so much, especially with my wench troupe. We have the most fun!

Not sure if I mentioned it here in an earlier post, but I’ve decided that the troupe needs its own songs. Originals. Written for us, to suit our act and to expand our repertoire. That way, if and when we record a second album, it will have some really new material interspersed with traditional wench/pub songs. Fun, right? Right!

Alas, none of the other wenches feels she has the requisite skills to undertake songwriting… not even the group’s twice-published novelist.

After a bit of discussion, we decided that I should do it. After all, I’m the one who really wants it done. I’m the one who suggested it. And I’m the one who’s written a song for us before, albeit only one (i.e., the Men’s Birthday Ditty)… a year and a half ago. Never mind that the women’s version has been unfinished since that time, that I haven’t been quite able to get it right.

Anyhoo, I was pressed (by our first album‘s producer) to declare how many songs I intended to write for the group this year, which sent me into spasms of frightened laughter, as “intend to” seems entirely the wrong term. “Hope to” seems far more appropriate. And I do hope to write a total of six songs for us to incorporate into our act… and into our next album, should we record one. So I said that, or something similar, laughed at my presumption and pooh-poohed the compliments and assurances of my sister wenches and our producer, who all declared their faith in my talent and ability to do this thing.

Yeah, right.

And that same night, not an hour later, as I was driving home from rehearsal, the germ of a song came to me, a lyric line, complete with its melody. By the time I went to bed, I had a chorus and the structure for the rest of the song laid out in my mind.

The next morning, in a little over an hour, I had the first song written, and with some technical help from BC17, I recorded a stripped-down version and sent it off to the group for input.

To a woman, they loved it! We’re going to work out parts, etc., at our pre-show rehearsal this evening, and it will be a real song!

Wanna see the lyrics?

Sure, you do!

Check it out:

A Man Like That

I want a man who knows my hills and dales,

One who’ll keep my garden wet,

Who’ll chase the wolves and never fail

To give me puss a pet.



Have you ever met a man like that,

A man who’s made like that?

Who’ll plow your fields both day and night?

Have you ever met a man like that?


I want a man who sets my soul on fire,

A man with heaven’s keys,

Who gives new meaning to “oh, god!”

And who brings me to my knees.



Have you ever met a man like that,

A man who’s made like that?

With an angel’s smile and a devil’s touch?

Have you ever met a man like that?


I want a man to tower over me,

Who is masterfully built.

A solid man who’ll stand the test of time,

With calves to rock a kilt.



Have you ever met a man like that?

A man who’s made like that?

With shoulders you can prop your feet up on?

Have you ever met a man like that?


I want a man who can take the heat

Who will stoke my forge and fire,

Who pounds my metal hot and sweet,

And shapes my heart’s desire.



Have you ever met a man like that?

A man who’s made like that?

A man who knows just when to strike?

Have you ever met a man like that?


You can spend your life in drudgery

Feeling lonely, sad or fat.

But you’ll never see who’s right in front of you.

No, you’ll never meet a man like that.


(final chorus)

So lift your head and fluff your girls,

Sing and dance and laugh.

Give the game of life a loving whirl.

Don’t you know a man likes that?

Don’t you know we all like that?

© 2014 Toni Finley All Rights Reserved

I know it loses quite a bit in the translation to words on a screen. If I could figure out how to embed my little recording of it, I would. Sadly, I do not. **

On that same fateful drive home from rehearsal, I also had the idea for second song! It plays with and  off of the idea of the wenches being the musical instruments a minstrel group might play… And it’s nearly finished, too. In fact, I thought it was a fait accompli, but I’ve decided I want it to end differently, so I shall be tweaking it further after I finish this long-overdue post.

And I think I’ve worked out the wenches’ birthday thing, too… although what I’ve come up with may be too short and simple. We shall see.

Still, I feel so productive! And only mildly guilty that I’ve nothing on the needles. Still, with WWKIP week coming up in only one short week,*** I feel a growing compunction to get back to the ol’ KPKP, if you know what I mean. The urge has been building, and I can resist anything but temptation.

I am, after all, a wench. 😉

* It’s called The Midnight. We go on at 9:30, probably doing two sets. We’re headlining, which sounds very fancy, but really means a couple of guys we don’t know and didn’t pick are gonna play guitar and sing before us. Still, headlining has a nice delusion of grandeur ring to it. Come on down and hang out with us, if you can and are so inclined. We’d love to see you.

** Oh. Apparently, I have to pay for a “space upgrade” to post sound files. Grrrr. I think, instead, I’ll post a link to a Youtube recording of it later, once we’ve made one and published it.

*** June 14-21, according to this FB page someone set up. And who am I to argue with a FB page someone set up? Hey, it’s on the internet, so it must be true, right? Riiiiiight.

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In my last post, teased you with photos of the BC17 and a kitten “helping” me make a new doublet for the BC17 to wear at this year’s Hoggetowne Medieval Faire. To sum up, he needed it to be red, and he chose the gold lining fabric from my stash.

Here’s how it turned out, in a boring “hanging-on-a-door” shot:

Pardon the creases. They came out in the wash.

Pardon the creases. They came out in the wash.

And here’s posed picture of the boy wearing it, with some of his accessories.

Beware the uncoiled serpent - er, hose - at your feet, Red Undant!

Beware the uncoiled serpent – er, garden hose – at your feet, dread pirate Red Undant!

You may note a lack of boots, for example. In truth, he could wear this in warm weather with some sort of rope sandals, but it was far too cool during this year’s faire for that. He also had various bits and bobs that hung from his belt, and a black wool overcoat, but I didn’t get a photo of that. The Hubs did, and I’m hoping to get a shot of that (soon?) to share with you.

The BC17 and some other friends formed a comedy pirate crew, the Pirates of Impropriety, and charmed the patrons and spectators at the faire. They were so popular that they’ve been solicited about appearing at other faires in the area this spring! It was so fun to watch my son throwing himself into his character, Red Undant, and having fun with his friends. His theatrical bent? Let’s just say he comes by it honestly.

The medieval faire was held on the last weekend in January and the first weekend in February. I was lucky to be able to take off from work entirely around those weekends. I have hundreds of hours of leave accumulated, as I rarely take vacation, so it was a real pleasure to have the chance to rest for so many days. (I’ve completely swapped my sleep schedule over to accommodate my change to dayshift, a change that would have been much more difficult without the time off.)

Sadly, I got sick on Wednesday evening and am now struggling with a nasty case of the crud. Nasty enough that I had to call in sick today (which would have been my first day back after my vacation), but not nasty enough to require actual medical intervention (so far… knock on wood). I’m planning to work tomorrow and Sunday (my regular work days), provided I can sleep tonight. (Wish me luck, please? Thanks.)

So the faire itself? It was a blast! My singing comedy wench troupe, Just Desserts, was once again hired to perform, and our shows were packed. We performed 3 times a day each Saturday and Sunday, and we acted as street characters when not on stage. In addition, I emceed both Saturdays’ and Sundays’ end of day Closing Pub Sings, which are among my favorite things ever!

This year, we wenches were extra excited, because we also released our first ever album!*

That’s right, an album!

It’s called Just Desserts Live: Come Get Yours and it’s available on Bandcamp right now, soon to be available on iTunes, amazon.com, and other distributors.

Here’s what the front cover of the album (which is available only as a mp3 download) looks like:

I swear I did not actually bite Molly! Cupcake is just a tease. Promise!

I swear I did not actually bite Molly! Cupcake is just a tease. Promise!

And here’s what the back cover looks like:

Much more dignified here.

Much more dignified here.

If you want to hear any or all of the songs, you can click on the bandcamp link. There you can listen to each of the songs, in their entirety, without obligation. **

We’re currently running a push for FB page “likes” and have pledged to give away a free copy of our album when we reach 350 likes. As of 10 p.m. this very Friday night, we’re at 335. I’d love for you to like us and perhaps win a copy. This is the second giveaway we’ve run, and we plan to hold more in the near future.

Of course, you are always welcome to purchase the album, so you can get yours without delay.

* OK, so you’ve probably figured out that the mysterious and exciting “thing” I was doing (and hinting about) was recording this album. It took two live performances, plus a studio session for the bonus selections, to get the sound quality we wanted.

We also had a photo session with Allen Finley Photography, wherein many photos were taken to get the two on our cover art. He also took solo photos of us, which we may use for future endeavors.

Finally, some more of my off-work time was taken up in designing and creating the cover art for the album. In my old life as a magazine editor, I did a little layout and design, and it was pretty cool to have the chance to flex those muscles (unused for 8 years!) again. And I am, I must confess, quite pleased with the results.

That’s all for now, kittens. I must dose myself up with anti-crud meds and attempt to sleep, as 5:30 a.m. comes too damned early. G’nite!

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Ok, so Spring Baby Cardi pics, plus hat and booties…


Let’s go.

I'm calling it the Spring Baby Cardi. This is the yoke.

I’m calling it the Spring Baby Cardi. This is the yoke. (Sept. 27th)

You may remember that photo from the last post.

Here’s a shot of the sweater after I got about an inch below the armholes:

Love seeing the sleeve stitches on holders!

Love seeing the sleeve stitches on holders! (Oct. 4th)

A day later, I’d finished the body of the sweater…

It's beginning to look a lot like a cardi! (Oct. 5th)

It’s beginning to look a lot like a cardi! (Oct. 5th)

Then there was a sleeve:

Look at those decreases on the underside of the sleeve... lovely!

Look at those decreases on the underside of the sleeve… lovely!

What?! You can’t tell what’s what? Clearly, the sleeve is on the right side of the photo, with the skirt of the sweater on the left side. The hole is under the arm, and is one of the only two seams in the sweater.

Still can’t see it?

OK, fine.

Here’s a photo from a more prosaic perspective, taken after the underarm seam had been stitched up.

Oh, that looks more normal!

Oh, that looks more normal!

And finally, the FO shot:

Pretty purple buttons on a pretty sweater. (Nov. 4th)

Pretty purple buttons on a pretty sweater. (Nov. 4th)

A few weeks later, I made a hat, using the Twisted Pumpkin pattern from Charmed Knits by Alison Hanson. My only modification: I didn’t knit the stem part off the hat.

Feisty (the cat) is pressed into service as a photo backdrop.

Feisty (the cat) is pressed into service as a photo backdrop. (Nov 16th)

To make the sleeve striping patterns on cardi match better, I tampered with the skein. By pulling it out until I reached a suitable starting point in the dye pattern, I was able to make the sleeves look similar. And I set aside the extra yarn, knowing I’d use it for the booties.

And when it came time to make the booties, I made sure to match up the remaining yarn to have both booties starting at about the same place in the dye pattern.

And here’s how that turned out:

Such sweet little booties! (Nov. 26th)

Such sweet little booties! (Nov. 26th)

And, finally finally, here’s a shot of the whole ensemble:

A pretty set for a pretty baby girl. (Nov. 26th)

A pretty set for a pretty baby girl. (Nov. 26th)

When all was knit and finished, I had only a few yards of yarn left. (Whew!)

The baby for whom these were knit is named Eleanor, a fine old-fashioned name. Her dad tells me the booties fit now, and he thinks the hat will fit very soon. As for the sweater, it’s sized to fit at about 6 months (I think), although I’m hoping her dad (Thomas!) will put it all on her – and take photos – sooner.  That way, I can have the photos to coo over share with you all here.

As for how I spent last weekend, I was with my sister wenches, recording our first album!!

More on that later. I’ve got to get to bed, as I have to work in the a.m. (Yep, I made the shift to dayshift last week!!)

G’nite, kittens!

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Whew, right?

It’s been forever since I updated and I know you’ve all been worried about me. (Not!) In fact, I’ve been doing precious little knitting, quite a bit of singing* and even more reading**.

Here’s how far I’d made it with the pink ruffle-edged sweater as December 18th:

Progress... sort of.

Progress… sort of.

Lookin’ good, yes? Well, not so much.

If you take a closer look at the sleeve-to-sleeve cap areas, you may notice that the sleeves are not quite the right size. In fact, the measurement of the sleeves at the top: 8 inches around. And the measurement of the sleeve openings on the body of the sweater: 10 inches around. Ooops!

What happened? Well, it turns out that having the correct number of stitches and rows is not enough. No, you must also use the correct needle size… or you must do the appropriate measuring and adjusting of the number of stitches and rows to accommodate the changed needle size. (I know: Duh!) (Also: sigh.)

So, um, yeah.

I had switched from the size-4 circ with which I knit the pretty white ruffled sections to a size-3 circ, because it had a nice, long and flexible cable and I had dreams of knitting the two sleeves simultaneously (above the ruffle, of course). Alas, I did not need the nice, long, flexible cable, because I didn’t knit them simultaneously. I also didn’t notice the fabric was denser on the sleeves than on the body of the sweater. And so I didn’t measure or compare or, well, do anything a responsible knitter should do to prevent the result you see in the photo above.

The solution: obvious.

I ripped back both sleeves to three rows after the ruffles and put them on a size-4 circ. And now I am knitting them simultaneously (without the nice, long, flexible cord of the size 3). The pattern calls for 51 rows and I’ve finished half of them. (No new photo. Sorry.)

Once I pick up the needles again, I should finish them pretty quickly. Then it’s just a matter of attaching them to the sweater and weaving in the ends. Oh, and putting some buttons on it, of course. I anticipate finishing the sweater by Monday… if I can find suitable buttons.

Wish me luck? (Thanks!)

* My madrigal group, Singers of Reformation, was booked to sing at the city’s Tree Lighting Celebration on December 1st. And on December 13th, we sang at the madrigal dinner of a local retirement community. We had quite a few rehearsals up to those shows.

My wench troupe, Just Desserts, had our December rehearsal this past Wednesday night. We did as much laughing as we did singing, as usual, with a lot of the time spent on the men’s birthday ditty I wrote earlier this year. I can’t wait till we can serenade some poor victims fellas as dozens of laughing audience members watch! (The Hoggetowne Medieval Faire is January 26th and 27th, then February 1st, 2nd and 3rd. If you’re in range of the faire, please come see us!)

** You can find info – but no spoilers! – on the books I’ve been reading in the sidebar labelled “2012 Books Read.” I highly recommend the Stieg Larsson trilogy that starts with The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, for example.

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I’ve been busy, unlike the rest of you, who no doubt have been lazing about and eating bonbons while planning a year-long cruise on a private yacht with a half-dozen of your closest friends. (Ahem.)

So I’ve been working… a lot… and had a music rehearsal or two… and caught up on some of my TV shows.. and, of course, laughed as often as possible. I’ve also been in a lot of pain for the last few days. Muscle spasms in my neck/shoulder led to a hellacious headache, one that is finally diminishing to a level at which I can ignore it.

In keeping with the theme of this this blog, I’ve written, knit, read a book or four(?), and petted some kitties.

As for the knitting, I finished one more of the “paler” boobie hats, pierced, which had the added benefit of finishing off a big (well, biggish) skein of yarn. I’d show you a picture of it, but that would mean I’d have to pull out my camera, take a photo, etc., etc. If you’re wondering what it looks like, you need only look at this year’s FO # 41, as this newest one is a clone.

As for the aforementioned purring, our family has been adopted by a neighborhood kitty. She looks almost exactly like Ninja Kitty did when we adopted her, except neighborhood kitty has yellow-green eyes and NK has green-green ones. Neighborhood kitty (whom we refuse to name, ’cause that would mean we’d have to keep her) has taken to sleeping on the former dining-room table that’s on our front landing. More precisely, she’s been climbing up inside the makeshift “flowerpots” that have been sitting there since the sun and weird bugs killed the tomato plants the Hubs attempted to grow this spring/summer.

I snapped a photo of her when I was out for a rare morning walk last week.

As Crissy said, “You grew a kitty!”

We’ve been feeding her, along with a teeny-tiny teenaged kitty-girl who occasionally visits, for a couple of weeks, and she is one loving cat! Definitely not feral, she loves being held and petted and, of course, fed. I don’t know how long she’ll be “not ours,” but we’re enjoying her company when we get it.

I’ve also been sewing, making a second pleated skirt for the my friend Crissy. She wanted a brown one to complete her Velma costume, by jinkies! To that end, she came over Monday night after our madrigal/Christmas singing rehearsal and we cut out the fabric and marked the circles, etc. As we had already worked out the peculiarities of fit (as you do) with the grey skirt, this one went much more smoothly.

Then last night I sewed it, starting at about 3 a.m. and finishing the handstitching-down of the waistband around 7 a.m.

All that remains is to put it on Crissy, mark the hem and then sew that final bit. Oh, and to take an official picture for posting. I’ll do that on Thursday night, after three of our wench troupe performs at a local club.

That’s right, Just Desserts will have a bedfull (our term for a quorum) to represent at the last-ever Nerd Nite at the Laboratory. (Last-ever because it’s closing at the end of the month… oh, no!) If any of you are here in Gainesville, Florida, around 9 p.m. Thursday, come on down!

Oh, and I wrote (see, there’s the “write” portion of the blog’s title) a song for the troupe to perform for birthday boys (well, men… ’cause it would be completely inappropriate for minors, trust me). I’d never written a song before, but we’ll need our own songs if the troupe is gonna have some original music to perform and perhaps record and sell, right? Right! At least that’s what I told the troupe at our last rehearsal.

You should have seen the deer-in-the-headlights looks they gave me! I think they were afraid I was gonna assign each of them a topic and set a deadline. No. In fact, to alleviate their fear and to get the ball rolling, I volunteered to write the first one. We haven’t recorded it yet and I have no idea how to post an mp3 here anyway, so I can’t post the actual song. I can, however, post the lyrics, which are subject to modification and ad-libbing ad nauseum… ’cause that’s how we roll!

Here are the lyrics:

Men’s Birthday Ditty

(wench 1)        Today is your day.
(wench 2)        You’re the man of the hour.
(wench 3)        Your swagger is strong.
(wench 4)        You exude manly power.
(wench 5)        Oh, what’s a wench to do…
(all)                   But to wish these things for you?
(wench 1)        May your cock only crow (cockadoodle-doo!)
                          When the timing is right.
(wench 2)        May your ass not get tired (hee-haw!)
                          From morning to night.
(wench 3)        May your ale at the pub
                         Come with plenty of head.
(wench 4)        And the pusses you pet (meow!)
                          Leave no fleas in your bed.
(wench 5)        In short, may your year
                         Bring you naught but good luck
(all)                  With a wench in your bed
                        When it’s time to get…
(all, slowly)     …. tucked… in!
(all, ad-libbed loudly) Happy birthday, love!
OK, that concludes the wrap-up. I apologize for the lack of amazing blogitude lately and thank you for your patience. Happy hump day and, always, happy knittin’, kittens!

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At karaoke last night, Crissy rocked the bar with her amazing singing and with her adorable grey pleated skirt. Luckily for us, the hubs was there with his professional camera and his professional skills.

Check it out:

Why, yes, that is the 2012 Gator football schedule behind Crissy. Why do you ask?

Not sure which song she was belting out then, possibly Crazy (the classic by Patsy Cline, of course).

It was great to sing for an audience again and to hang out with two of my sister-wenches (Crissy and Shay, a.k.a. Cheri Tart and Ginger Snap). I have missed it and them so much. But with no OT this weekend, I finally had time to live like a normal* person. And I feel absolutely uplifted and rejuvenated. Yay for karaoke with friends!

What do you call a quorum of a wench troupe? A bedful**, of course!

Oh, I’m knitting a light-blue twisted pumpkin baby hat right now, mostly because I have the pattern memorized and that was the yarn I had with me at work Thursday night. Once I finish that, I plan to make a few boobie hats (but knit, rather than crocheted) for the new moms*** on my list. Fun!

Off to knit a bit now, while watching early morning TNT shows. Right now, Smallville, then Charmed, then Supernatural. (Ah, Supernatural, how I drool over your stars enjoy your storylines!) [Update: Ack! It’s Saturday morning, so no Charmed and no Jensen or Jared Supernatural! Ah, well, guess I’ll watch the remake of Coma, dvr’d last night on A&E. It’s always good to have backup plans.)

* Your definition of normal may differ from mine. Ahem.

** Spellcheck doesn’t like it, but I’ve decided it’s a real word anyway.**** (Suck it, spellcheck!)

*** Yes, that does mean that three (count ’em, three) of my pregnant friends popped out their babies since my last post. WTF! And no, I don’t have the projects for any of them knit yet. Sigh.

**** Spellcheck doesn’t think “spellcheck” is a real word either. Identity crisis much? Ah, irony, how I love thee!

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What I did last night

… at Loosey’s, while waiting for my next turn at the karaoke microphone:

No, not holding the socks up for photos… Knitting! I promise!

Pardon my derpy look. I wasn’t exactly sure when the snap was going to happen, as it was quite loud in the bar and the hubs and I didn’t arrange any hand signals beforehand.

For the record, I knit 7 rounds on each sock and am rapidly approaching the point where the cabley stuff will stop and the K1P1 cuff will begin. (Yay!) My secret hope (which I’m not gonna say too loudly, to avoid jinxing myself) is to finish the socks tonight. It’s my last night off (out of 7!) before going back to the ol’ work grind, and I’d love to be able to show off wear my Widdershins socks Monday night at the comm center.

I’m still waiting for Gayle to send me a photo from Friday night’s karaoke/WWKIP adventure, but you can picture the socks as they were then if you think “about half an inch shorter.” (And yes, I’ll put the picture up when I get it, if it’s in focus, etc., etc.)

My song list: “Crazy” by Patsy Cline, “Come to my Window” by Melissa Etheridge and “These Dreams” by Heart.

I also submitted two others, but didn’t make it up for those, ’cause there were so many other people wanting to sing, too. Still, it was good to sing again, even if it hadn’t been 24 hours since my last time onstage.

After the bar closed, our group was standing on the sidewalk, gabbing and laughing, when one of a trio of men nearby started talking to one of the other chicas in our party and somehow it came out that three of us were part of the singing wench troupe Just Desserts. That’s right, I was with Cherri Tart and Tira McSue in our non-wench garb and personae, of course. The guys asked us to perform a naughty ditty for them and we were only too happy to oblige. We did an impromptu version of The Chandler’s Shop, a number Gayle-as-Tira doesn’t normally do, but she sure rocked it! The guys said they loved it and told us we could make a fortune if we set up a busking post downtown! Not likely to happen, as we all have full-time jobs, but a nice compliment, nonetheless.

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Last night was karaoke night and I felt the need to sing. (You know how that goes, right? Right. I knew that you did.) The locale is a restaurant/bar at a bowling alley, which sounds way seedier than it is. The hubs and I joined my friend and sister wench Gayle (a.k.a. Tira McSue) at Splitz. (Cute name, right? Right.)

Due to Florida’s laws banning smoking in indoor public-use locales, including those that sell food, the air inside is clean and fresh enough to breathe and to sing and to not pollute my Widdershins socks-in-progress. So it was a no-brainer* that I should bring my ubiquitous knitting pouch containing said socks, then pull them out and knit while others were singing.**

* Well, only if you interpret “no-brainer” to mean that all the reasons I stated above were already deeply ingrained into my subconscious mind and therefore didn’t require actual cogitation. Otherwise, my decision was at least a “little-brainer”… which just sounds wrong, so let’s stick to “no-brainer,” okay? Okay. Thanks.

** Yes, there is photographic evidence, but it’s on Gayle’s camera and I have to wait till she sends me a copy before I can post it. Sorry, kittens, but neither of us wenches could figure out how to use our cellphone cameras to send pictures to someone else.*** (Note to self: find youtube video of that and learn how to send frakkin’ pictures from the frakkin’ cellphone to other cellphones and to email!)

*** I may be slandering Gayle’s cellphone-camera-picture-sending abilities and/or knowledge, because it was really loud in Splitz when she told me why she was going to use her actual camera and not her cellphone to take the photo. She may have said, “My cellphone camera doesn’t have a flash and won’t get a good picture,” or “My cellphone’s camera isn’t working right now,” or “Wouldn’t you rather have a good photo taken on my actual camera than a possibly crapola one taken with my cellphone camera?” As I said, it was really loud in there. (Ahem.)

I got 8 rounds (a full cable repeat) completed on the pair, which adds about another inch to the length. Here’s a photo I took this morning of one of them on my foot, with the other lying alongside and one of the skeins hiding the razor stubble on my leg providing an idea of how much yarn remains to be knit:

A much nicer fit, doncha think? Me, too.

Gayle invited us out for karaoke again tonight, at a different venue, where KIP will probably be more noticed and noted, which is the point of WWKIP week, right? Right. I don’t know if there will be table space for it, as this place had much less elbow room per person the last time I sent there, so the project bag may remain in my purse. But never fear, it will be with me and, if the opportunity presents, I will KIP like a mutha’! Represent!

For now, I bid you adieu. I needs must take my tired tuckus to my amazing waterbed of joy and read a bit, then sleep the rest of the day away, so that I might be arise refreshed this evening at a decent hour and then go out and sing some more! (Have I ever mentioned how much I love, love, love to sing? No? Are you sure? Well, I do. So now you know.)

[Updated to add:]

My songlist for the night: “When Will I Be Loved” by Linda Rondstadt, “Come to my Window” by Melissa Etheridge, “Alone” by Heart. Oh, and my horrendous first-ever attempt at “Magic Man” by Heart. That last one will need a bit of work before it’s ready for prime time.

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