Archive for November, 2004

Spam Warfare

Tuesday, November 30th, 2004

In which Annie maps out a strategy to get rid of the SPAM

So I’m getting more than a little fed up with the spammers out there (you know who you are, even if the FBI doesn’t!), and think I’ve discovered a plan to at least slow the tide…

I’m going to map out the strategy here, so those of you with more MT experience can jump right in and say “Yup, that’s exactly what you need to do!” or “NO! STOP! YOU’RE GOING TO DESTROY YOUR BLOG LIFE AS YOU KNOW IT!”

So here goes.

I’m going to export a copy of my blog (using Netscape) to a text file, and then I’m going to set all the “Allow Comments” tags to equal 2 (no comments allowed) except for the last week’s worth of entries. I’m also going to delete all the spam comments (and leave all the good stuff!). Then (and this is the scary part) I’m going to delete all the entries currently in the blog and then import the new, edited and improved blog text file.

In theory, that should work like a charm, right? But in reality?????

So if anyone wants to jump in and give me some help/cautions/encouragement, please, by all mean, do so!

In the meantime, I’m working on a new Sophie bag using a wool-pak in a charcoally blue. I think I’ll do the standard twisted i-cord strap on it, although after seeing Norma’s beautiful pink and brown beaded handle on her pink Sophie, I’m seriously thinking about enhancing my own purse stash. Norma’s cautionary tale about grommet installation is timely as well, because this evening’s agenda includes going out to the local Home Depot (now *there’s* an oxymoron!) to pick up grommets to reinforce the tote bag strap entry points for Hannah’s teacher’s Booga Bag modified.

Hannah and I made the pins and trinkets from Fimo to go on the bag, so it’s very close to being finished. Her class party is on the 17th, so I’ll plan on giving it to her then. I’ll stuff it with some of DMIL’s special soaps, and probably a few other goodies as well, although I’m not entirely sure what sorts of things she likes. But I’ve got some time to figure it out.

And today’s adventure at lunch will include a quick trip to the Knit Nook (oh god, please let it be open) to pick up some real size 8 circulars (and maybe some 9′s and 10′s for good measure) so that I can re-swatch the Wobbly Ribs sweater swatch and get closer to gauge. I’m really off right now (except that I used 6′s instead of the recommended 8′s because I was too lazy to get my needle gauge and I guessed wrong when I grabbed), so hopefully this will solve the problem.


Finally, a question: Does anyone out there have a favorite simple soup recipe? We’re having a soup potluck lunch here at work next week, and while I thought I knew which soup I wanted to make, now I’m not sure….


Saturday, November 27th, 2004

In which Annie is overjoyed that today is Not Sunday, and thus tomorrow is Not Monday

It’s the little things in life that make me happy. Like waking up this morning to realize that it wasn’t Sunday, I didn’t have to get up and get dressed for church, and that the post office is still open today and I can mail the package I promised to send to my mother.

I’m also happy because I got to get out of the house for a while yesterday to get to Sophie’s, a new yarn store here in Louisville. Spent time with Viki, and while we were there, we flipped through the newest Knitters–and we’ve decided that we have to have “Wobbly Ribs.”

OK, so it’s a funky, not very attractive name for a sweater. But we both liked the textured look of the sweater and how it fits, so we went off to the “Wall o’ Encore” and chose colors. Since the medium only calls for 1065 yards, we got off pretty cheaply.

Our goal is to have swatches and gauge set by Tuesday, and start on the back.

But now I’m headed out to hit the PO and go to (gasp) Target. Wish me luck!

Turkey Day, Belated

Thursday, November 25th, 2004

In which Annie can’t recall her MT password, and has to wait to get the cheat sheet…

I actually wrote this on Thursday, intending to post it then, but couldn’t for the life of me recall my password to publish…kind of like the code to get into the garage…. Anyway, here’s the belated post…

It’s a little sick to wake up at 4:00 ayem on the first of four whole
days off in a row…but to tell the truth, I’m so excited about
having some TIME away from the office and the various pressures that
go with it. Sleep? I can do that at work (NOT!)

So Eric and Hannah left this morning at 6:00 with the twins (Jake and
Lincoln, matching English Pointers) to hunt quail, pheasant and
chukker. Not exactly sure why DH feels compelled to gather more
poultrey on this day of the King of the Birds, but since they’ll have
to age a day or two anyway, I suppose we’ll be ready to eat them by
the weekend. Hannah was absolutely giddy with excitement about going
on her first bird hunt. Her job is to help give the dogs treats and
to help retrieve. We had a long session last night on safety, and a
review session this morning before they left. She’s an amazing
kid…hates doing busy work in school, but sharp as a tack. “Mommy,
I will listen to Daddy and do *everything* he tells me because guns
can kill people and I don’t want to be dead.” Well, OK. Thanks for
putting into words my exact fears. Eric is incredibly careful,
especially around the kids. Doesn’t stop me from worrying, but I’m
not worried to the point of refusing to let them go.

So the paperweight is still asleep, and so is the chihuahua, nestled
deep in the bed still. We took her to get her teeth cleaned this
week, and it’s the most amazing thing–we didn’t realize for how long
we’d been pushing her away because of her “stank bref,” but now she
smells absolutely sweet. I’m a little peturbed at my regular vet,
however. She just had an annual checkup in August, and I asked them
to check her teeth because her breath was getting so bad. They
said “All’s well.” Harumph. Is that why she had to have four
extractions less than three full months later?? The “new” vet is the
one I use when I don’t feel like driving all the way across town, and
although he’s more expensive, I am getting the feeling that he’s more
genuinely concerned for the animal’s welfare. Not that the other
guys aren’t, but I’m not sure they’re as careful with the best little
bedwarmer in the world as they could be.

The other good news is that she’s at an ideal weight for her size–9
pounds of pure love. At almost ten years old (we think), that’s good
news. She’s slowing down a little (she trots to follow the kids
instead of going at an all-out run), but she’s healthy and active and
shows no signs of arthritis or any other aging ailments. Her eyes
are clear, her hearing is good, and she’s sleek and smooth and
wonderful. And she has nice, short toenails. Viki will appreciate
that–whenever Viki and Jordan (and Dave and Mariah) babysit for
Perdita, Viki trims her nails for me. I can do it, but it’s very
traumatic for me and the dog, and neither one of us trusts the
other. We’ve been more careful about getting them trimmed once a
month or so, and the quicks are shortening–and hooray! no more
clicking on the wood floors!

Sorry for babbling this morning, but with luke still asleep, I feel
like I need to get out as much as I can before he wakes up.

Anyway, I also got some good news this morning–the person who won
the “Name that Rust Conference” contest (Julia, from wrote late last night to gush about the box of
DMIL’s fiber I sent her. I think she was expecting a little dinky
bag with 8 ounces. Oh no. Not me. I needed the help, so she got
the whole four and a half pounds. Don’t worry, though. There will
be more chances to get your hands on parts of the stash as the year
progresses. Ruth really wanted some (and came up with some fantastic
ideas), so I’ll definitely have to figure out a fair way to spread
the wealth.

Speaking of sharing, I’ve been corresponding with Shannon Okey about
the Thriller Scarf Book. She’s still interested in coordinating the
collection of scarves and patterns and the like, and asked if I could
send her the list of folks who expressed interest in participating.
I told her I was bowing out (it doesn’t seem appropriate to continue
my participation), but wanted to ask you all if you thought it would
be ok for me to send her people’s names and e-mail addresses. Or do
you think it would be better for her to just resolicit folks to
participate? There were quite a few folks (more than 30) who said
they’d want to play…

I’ll be making apple pie and stuffing (out of the bird, since our
friends are planning to deep-fry) later this morning, as well as
Sweet Potato biscuits. I’ve already made a coconut cake (it’s better
when it sits overnight to let the flavors meld), and that’s the
extent of my turkey day contribution this year. So very strange to
be going to someone else’s house for Turkey day–no leftovers, no
good turkey-roasting smells….but there will be football and beer
and wine and friends, and the kids will be happy because there will
be lots of new adults to shower attention on them.

I’ve finished knitting the “bag that never ends” for Hannah’s
teacher. I’m making an over-sized Booga bag for her to use as a tote
bag for school–I needed it to be at least 12 inches tall after
felting, so I knit the Lambs Pride worsted (in Onyx) to 20 inches.
Hopefully forty percent will be enough…. Now I’m trying to finish
the eight feet of five-stitch i-cord so that I can do all the felting
with the laundry today. Hannah and I are making sculpey/fimo pins to
decorate the bag (and conveniently, Michaels had sculpey and fimo on
sale this week for 99 cents) so that the gift will be from both of
us. It’s such a pleasure this year to know that Hannah has such a
good teacher.

OK, time for me to go preheat the oven and start peeling apples.
Y’all have an absolutely fabulous thanksgiving, and I’ll catch up
with you later.