Are Elephants for Christmas?

Oh, it’s about 4am. Having my coffee. I’m usually up this early, knitting needles in hand long before the coffee has finished steeping. But, I had a hard time sleeping last night. I, like many people who are stressed, grind my teeth so loudly that Phillip will wake and say, “DUDE! You’re going to saw your face in half!”

So, I’m on a time crunch to finish paying the rent, so I thought I’d sell one of my sets of “BEASTIES.” Then I thought, maybe it was too expensive? Especially for this time of year? What do you do? Well, sell them one at a time, I guess. I mean, if that’s what it takes. Ok, then. The bunny and elephant are now finished and available in my shop if you’re interested. I know it’s early in the morning, but I’m so hoping to have them sold before 7am so I can go to Publix and send the payment to the landlord. I can try again at 9am, but with my agoraphobia, it gets really difficult to leave the apartment after that. But, you do what you have to.

So, if you’d like the bunny, click here. Or if it’s an elephant you fancy for Christmas, click here.

Have a good day everyone.

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I Hope I Haven’t Made a Huge Mistake

I’m knitting from bed today. Oh, don’t worry. It isn’t my health again. I’m fit as a fiddle, as they say. No, I may have made a horrible mistake and I’m hoping that isn’t the case. Only time will tell, I guess.

We have finally, officially, with our warrant, adopted the little kitten we called “Betty.” Two nights ago the weather was delightful, and we had the front door open. She playfully made her way in, being coaxed with rubs under the chin, until I finally just closed the door and said, “THERE! Now, you’re in. I can protect you now.”

All seemed lovely, right? Phillip and I high-fived, Betty sort of made a sigh of relief and really gave the impression that she had no interest at all in going back outside…..however, Bacon and Mario were beside themselves. Now, no one seems happen. Our little fur babies were angry and hostile. Bacon tread around the house, swatting and combative, standing before the food bowl when Betty would make way for it, hounding outside the cat boxes just to make sure this new feline fiend couldn’t use it. How vicious he’s been? And Mario? Overly distraught and dramatic, hissing horribly at the little kitten, then boarding herself up in our bedroom, refusing to come out.

I’m hoping I haven’t made a huge mistake. I seem to have disrupted our little world and it’s often happy tones by introducing a kitten. I was sure that Bacon would finally have a playmate (Mario is NOT the playful sort), and I was so hoping Mario would have something to drag by the neck and TEACH.

Here it is, two days later, and it dawned on me that Mario was serious about this. I took in a bowl of food which she gobbled up quickly, a bowl of water, which she equally consumed with vigor, and one of the cat boxes which she…..well, you know. Damned if that cat probably doesn’t hold the world record for holding it in.

But, she was adamant, clinging close to my side of the bed, not wanting to be seen, not wanting to accept that she was feeling, “replaced.” Coyly under the covers she’s pulling her own Garbo. “I Vant to be ALONE.” (wrist to brow, as the head tilts back, so the lips may release the  whisper of a whimper). Yes, that is a pic of Mario, hiding in despair, covers over feelings, blanket over emotion. “Just…..leave me be….Why do you even care? After all, you don’t love me anymore…..” (Good grief). Meanwhile the kitten has learned that the bedroom is off limits to her (according to the other two), and that Mario really REALLY does not like her. Betty still bounces around though, with the stupidity of youth asking, “Why won’t anyone be my friend?”

So, I’m working from bed today so that she knows I’m right here, still by her side, not going anywhere and neither is she. Let’s hope this works. God, I can’t imagine having real children.

I’m working on a new set of my “Collection.” You know, a bear, a rabbit, a lion, a tiger, and an elephant, all in one beautiful box. Now, the rabbit USED to be made with fair isle, but the brand I was using is discontinued, so I just went with a really cool “mushroom” color. It fits the set. After I finish this set, I’ll start right away on a second because the first set will help us finish paying rent, and the second set will help me buy my Christmas present for Phillip. So, I’m desperate to at least get the first set sold.

I think they would make wonderful Christmas presents, even if you split them up among five little ones in your brood. If you’re interested, click here.

Ok, back to the salt mines, as they say. And back to tending to the kids. (I get now why some mom’s scream, “HEY! KIDS! Mommy’s watching Kathy and Kota,” while sipping chardonnay from a coffee cup….)

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I Call It, “Overly Ambitious Buddhist.”

I had the best time last night with my little $1 sale. I just couldn’t go to bed, nor could I stop. Ok, I had a bowl of chili by my side because it is flat out COLD in Central Florida right now. But, with bowl of chili in hand I was quick to mail out my patterns and books as soon as they were purchased. BAM! My five minute turn around may have dropped to a two minute turn around. And not only that, I got to meet some really interesting people, many of whom I’ll be writing about in the coming days. So, knitting, chili, writing. What else could you want?

Phillip asked before he went to bed, “How long are you going to be up?” I could only response with a very smiley, “As long as it takes….”

Then, soon enough, a full belly and a long day got the best of me and I had to crash. But, in true Gregory Patrick form I was back up at 3am, sending patterns back out. We sold about 60 “units” as they say in the business in a good 12 hour span. LOVE. See? THAT is love.

I know I threatened to end the sale around the time I finished my “Murder, She Wrote,” last night, but I never got around to watching it. Nope. I was too busy and distracted sending patterns and books out via email and chit chatting with anyone who was kind enough to write to me back 🙂 I loved it.

So, I’m back at it again tonight. But, just for tonight. It will have to be last time I do this. Far too many other things to take care of, but it has been a delight. So, for one more night only my little shop has all of my written work and patterns on sale for $1. I’ll be responding right back atcha.

There really is no need for the photograph than a quick sort of “self portrait” I noticed to my side. I call it, “Overlay Ambitious Buddhist.” But, think about it. Everything you need to know about me is in my books, those I collect, and those I write. (ha!)

Click here to find all the fun things in the shop for $1, all for knitters and readers alike. And I’m sure I’ll be talking to many of you in the next few minutes 🙂

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30 New Blessings…No, Wait. 32

Confidence and ambition can do delicious things to your moral. But, you have to keep your spirits up. No matter what happens, or doesn’t happen. You must always continue to have faith in what you do….

Earlier today I posted that I was going to be selling all of the books and patterns in my shop for $1. Not a bad deal, eh? Actually, an exceptionally good deal. But, the sale would only last for the day, not forever. Basically, it would end when I go to bed tonight. Sometime after “Jeopardy!” and “Murder, She Wrote…” Damn, throw in some old school Andy Rooney and a sip of Brandy and BAM! I’m my grandmother 🙂 (“Would you toss me that afghan? It’s a little cool in here. No…Not that one. The other one. The one from Gregory….”)

I sat here in my chair, knitting in hand, staring at the laptop, waiting for something to happen.

Nothing. Hours passed…..”Don’t do it, Gregory. Don’t get discouraged. Just wait….” You take a deep breath and you trust in yourself and in the universe. Because just the slightest bit of negativity will wreck your plans with certain destruction. Negativity can’t stand to be left alone. It requires more negativity. And the next thing you know, you’re spilling out bad mojo all over the place, it stinks out of your pores, drips off your words.

Stay focused, look forward, not down.

PING! I dropped my needles. A sale. Hot damn! Emailed the pattern right back. PA-DING! Another pattern sold. Yes! And a few moments later, another. Then another. YES! And in the interim I’d write and knit. TA-TING! Hell, yeah! Another pattern sold.

I might be a writer. I might be a knitter. But, I’m a salesman at heart. Every sale is a validation of your work. I’ll take every last PING, PA-DING, and TA-TING I can get 🙂

Within a few hours I had managed to sell 30 PDF’s in my little shop. Now, a naysayer may say (is that grammatical???) that I only made $30. No, no. I made 30 new acquaintances, 30 new hopeful friends, 30 new blessings, 30 new reasons to believe in myself again. And THAT is remarkable. But! Here’s what I really love. A lot of the purchasers were new people I’d never heard of before. I’ve seen a lot of traffic coming from Ravelry lately and I’m not sure why. But, as someone on Facebook asked, “Why are you questioning the universe???” HA! Well, with all these new people, perhaps my little sale was a great way for new people to get to know me through my work.

I gather we have about three or four more hours before I head to bed. That’s when the sale will end. SO! Rush on ever to this little shop of mine by clicking here. Grab yourself some patterns, some books. I’ll be here. Clicking away with my knitting needles ready to email them to you in a turn around that has on average been FIVE beautiful, blissful minutes!

That’s right. I said it. Look forward, never down. Chin up. Straighten your posture. Now, go!

(And see? While writing this I sold two more PDF’s.) YAY!

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The Last Christmas Bear!

Yep! The last Christmas Bear for this year is done and ready to find a home. I had a good time with these, I truly did. But, they aren’t very limited edition if I keep making them, right? Besides, I might do some other things in the next week or so, other bears or other critters that other people might be interested in adopting for Christmas. And if I can make enough money on patterns and such, I’m going to knit up a few bears for charity well before Christmas. But, if you’d like this last Christmas Bear, click here.

And! in honor of the sales season, I have discounted all the pdf copies of my books and patterns in my shop to just $1 for the next 24 hours. SO! Hurry and snag something juicy to read, or adorable to knit!

UPDATE! My turn around time for emailing the patterns and books to purchasers has been FIVE minutes! NICE!!!! Let’s go! Sale ends soon!

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“Woah, Black Betty!”

Ok, if you have been following me here and there for the last few weeks, you’ve heard me mention this adorable little kitten that I have simply become enamored with. She’d been skiddish and jumpy, but seems to have taken quite the liking to me. We have this little ritual. I open the front door, leave the screen closed, and she pops over to visit at both 7am and 5pm. Some days I open the door and there she is waiting for me. I fill a little dish with food and visit with her. She hangs out for a few hours, twisting and cocking her head at me inquisitively, rubs against me, chit chats with Bacon through the screen.

This morning she tried to follow me to Publix. When I realized she was right behind me a block away, I was like, “Woah, woah, can’t do this. No, no, no, shooo! Go home.” None doing. So, I walked back home, put a little treat out for her and that kept her occupied until I got home. And there she was waiting for me when I returned. .

I’m trying to get her to finally come inside. I’ve opened the screen a bit, she pops her head in, says, “Nice pad,” then gets confronted with a screeching, screaming Mario who comes running across the living room, puffy tailed and ready to kill. And of course, the kitten dashes a few feet back, but then returns. Apparently, Mario isn’t too keen on having this little thing a part of our family. After all, for nearly a decade it was only Mario and me….then Phillip and Bacon came along and she just rolled her eyes, huffed in a corner, until she finally came around to them. Now, she tolerates Bacon, but Phillip is her boyfriend. She adores Phillip. Who doesn’t?

And since we have sort of, kind of, pretty much adopted her, we were trying to think of a name. Whenever I saw her, I’d kindly say, “Hey, Buddy!” But, that’s a dorky name. Then it hit us. “Black Betty.” Like the song, just so if she does something sketchy we can go, “Wooaaah, Black Betty, Bam uh Lam!” And Betty sounds alot like Buddy, which she has started responding to. So there! Bam uh Lam!”

I couldn’t help myself. I had to go out and take some pics this morning. I mean, come on. Look at the face! I even took a picture of her with one of my Christmas Bears. I was only able to do two this weekend. You remember, Phillip was sick and I spent all my time tending to him. But, the good news is, he is back to his old self and doing well.

I know it’s “Cyber Monday” and most people are going to be rushing through Amazon today, but I’d like to throw my little bear in the mix. Free shipping. I don’t know how many more I’ll be able to do before the 15th (for shipping reasons), so we’re running out of time! If you’d like one, click here. Like I said, there are only two for right now. And I really need to get as many of this knit and sold as soon as I can. After all, sales will plummet soon.

Ok. Need to get back to work….and go play with the kitten for a few more minutes. I really hope she becomes a part of our little family. 🙂

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It’s All About the Chicken Legs

So, you already knew that Thanksgiving was going to be slightly off this year, if you read my last post. Phillip woke yesterday morning (Thanksgiving Day) with an insane cold.

“All those little shits at work have been sick. They got me!” Damn. I guess we shouldn’t have watched “Contagion” and “Outbreak” the other night….

That poor husband of mine was a wreck. Oh, you should have seen it. He went through two rolls of toilet paper before we even got to midday. Mercy, I was gonna have my hands full. I plopped him on the couch (which is kinda hard, seeing how he’s twice my size, but he was weak, so nothing to it). I put on a pot of hot water. We don’t have a kettle, just one big pot we use for boiling water for tea and coffee.

“Don’t worry,” he said with grace and courage (Ha!), “I’ll be fine. Let’s go ahead with the day we planned.” Now, we have a sick, sordid tradition on Thanksgiving. We watch disaster films. Yes, if ever you want to feel grateful about your own situation, watch disaster films. Makes you feel much better knowing you aren’t being chased by lava, or that the earth is flipping it’s axis, or that the San Andreas fault is about to crack open. So, every year we watch disaster films to celebrate the holiday. This year Phillip wanted to rewatch “The Poseidon Adventure.”

My husband is a strong man, a dragon slayer, a big protector from the evils of the world. Yet, not even he can resist crying when Shelly Winters dies. Poor Shelly….

I was up and down. Grabbing an afghan, tucking him in, making him tea, and even a delicious instant cider (thank you Gheeta!). I made him soup from a can (don’t fault me, Publix was closed), and even tried to get him to just have hot, steamy water with lemon juice.

Oh, he whimpered and wallowed as I often asked, “Sweetheart? Can I get you anything else?”

“Well, popcorn with the movie would be nice….” Ok, then. Popcorn it is 🙂

We dashed through “The Poseidon Adventure,” and he finally agreed to watch my “Harry and Larry” movie. “Different movie, sweetheart. That’s an adult film. This is ‘When Harry Met Sally.'”

Of what he watched I could see he was enjoying it. But the sinister chill and sudden heat of a cold had him flopping all over. Need the afghan, don’t need the afghan. Burning up, frigid as ice. He finally passed out 10 minutes before “When Harry Met Sally” was finished. I ushered him to bed and that was that.

This morning he woke even worse.

“I didn’t sleep at all last night.”

But, despite how terrible he felt, he was determined to go to work. He’s not a “call out” kinda guy. Neither of us are. If we can walk, crawl, or roll, we make it. This time, I wasn’t so sure it was for the best. He was adamant, though. He was going to work. So I snapped this pic of him from off in the corner. (He hates when I take candid shots. (“Just practicing my lighting and composition, sweetheart!”)

There he was. Miserable and moaning. My big man was determine to push through this cold. If he can make it through his shift tonight, I’ll feel better. He has tomorrow off and I can tend to him properly.

He asked, “Will you make me your Savannah Swamp Voodoo Soup?”

“Of course!”

Now, you may wonder what that is. Strange sounding, isn’t it? Well, it’s nothing more than chicken soup with a few extra ingredients. Cabbage, for one. Some use swamp cabbage, which is basically hearts of palm, but I use just plain cabbage. The other is chicken feet. Yep. Now, I may need a scientist to clarify, but the swamp people put chicken feet in their soup because the idea is that there are so many antibodies running around in the bone marrow down there to protect them while the chickens are walking through their own….well, shit.

I double dog dare you to find chicken feet at the supermarket, so I go with chicken legs. Same principle, and it seems to work. But, once the meat falls off the bones, take the bones, crack them open and continue to let the marrow stew into the stock. And you have to use spring water when you make your stock. You can’t use piped, tapped water. Somehow it just seems different. You can taste the difference. You can FEEL the difference. A bowl of that, and you suddenly feel better, and the first thing you want to do is SLEEP. Off you go into slumber land while the potion works it’s magic.

More than the soup, I need to procure some other things to make him comfortable, asleep often, and content in bed for a good solid 24 hours. So I have this one last Christmas Bear in this style. The other version sold really well, this guy wasn’t as popular. That’s ok, some bears may do better than others, but all bears have a purpose. And this last little guy is going to help me get the things I need to get my husband well again. (A bottle of aspirin, some more tea, some more lemon, honey, chicken legs, etc).

So, if you’d like to adopt him, click here. You’ll get one helluva note of thanks if you do.

Ok…..time to wash the sheets. Because nothing helps a good spell of restful, healing sleep like a clean set of sheets.

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