Category Archives: five for friday

Five for Friday: Cativersary edition

1. The one-year anniversary of adopting Fuzz Ferdinand (3/30) happened while we were in California. I don’t know much about his life before he came to live with us, except that he was found in someone’s backyard in Queens and spent some time being fostered before we adopted him. Watching this little monkey slowly come to realize that we’re his forever people and make the shift from the nervous, cautious creature we brought home to a confident, affectionate member of our household has been one of the great joys of my last 12 months.
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2. Rob used to live in one of the buildings (on the top floor of an illegal seventh-floor walkup, no less) that burned down after the terrible explosion in the East Village last week. I can’t stop reading about it.

3. For some reason, the narrator of this video approves of turning a perfectly cromulent beatnik teenager into her mother.

4. ” If you walked around New York you would think there was a terrible mirror famine.” Two of my favorite things that I read online this week: Fran Lebowitz on style and this incredible account of a young man who became friends with the man who ended up with his stolen iPhone and how they both became celebrities in China.

5. I can’t stop looking at these stunning photos of huskies walking on a frozen lake.

Cat ownership = a life of endless glamour

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not a picture of the cat in question

I had planned to write a different post today, one about art that I’ve seen recently and THOUGHTS and FEELINGS, but when I came into our guest room/office/amp storage/litterbox room this morning, where my desk is, I found that the cat had thrown up on my computer. It’s a laptop, it was closed, I cleaned it off, not a big deal. I pulled out the desk chair to sit down…and found a pile of vomit under the desk. It had missed a nearby pile of reasonably important papers and folders, which was nice, so I cleaned that up, sat down at the desk, looked up…and saw a puddle of puke on the windowsill. In cleaning that up, I discovered that my little sweetpea had also disgorged into a large glass-jar candle that was sitting there. At this point, I’m seeing phantom cat barf out of the corner of my eye everywhere I go.

Fuzz Ferdinand got outside this weekend. We were in and out from the deck all day; I finally bought some plants, so I was repotting them and Rob was reading the paper, and even though we were keeping an eye on the door, the cat slipped out and we missed it. Worse, we didn’t realize it for hours, since he has a habit of hiding and napping in the apartment, so it’s pretty common to not see him for a while. But in the late afternoon, we did a thorough search of the apartment and had to admit he was out in the world by himself somewhere. We walked around the block and let our neighbors know and, in desperation, I googled “how to find a lost cat.” It turns out that the Wikihow for finding a lost cat is actually incredibly helpful–I’ve mostly had indoor-outdoor cats, and Luz was singular in many ways, but especially in that she’d come outside and sit on the stoop with us and exhibit complete disinterest in going anywhere else–so I’d never been in that position before. I’d even bought a harness and leash (to tie him to the deck railing, not for walking around) earlier in the day, but couldn’t get it on him. Was I beating myself up for not trying harder? I WAS INDEED.

I was picturing Fuzz taking off and getting as far away as possible and happily adapting to life on the run, possibly joining a gang of feral cats, but the wiki said that he was probably very close to home, scared, and hiding, and to relax and keep checking at dusk and after dark when he was more likely to venture out. So that’s what we did. We had a few sightings and he pulled off some ninja moves–at one point, Rob, our landlord, and I had him cornered in the space under our desk, which is bricked in on three sides, and he just…vanished–that would have been impressive if I hadn’t just wanted to get him inside again so badly. Eventually, I put his food bowl outside and left the outside light on. A few hours later, right before I was going to have to give in and go to sleep, I checked again and he was cowering under the bench on the deck. I lured him out with his favorite catnip-filled banana and brought him inside. He was pretty freaked out and covered with twigs and whatnot, but unhurt and he’s been extra cuddly and loving since.

He is microchipped, but I don’t know if the contact information was updated when we adopted him. If he was brought into a shelter, they would have been able to find us through the adoption people, but they likely would have shamed us (with vigor!) and I would really like to avoid that.

Five for Friday

20140523-103341.jpg1. I love Kim’s new rules for email.

2. I’ve joined the sewalong for Colette Patterns’s Mabel. I haven’t worked much with knits and this seems like a pretty easy entry point to that whole thing. I don’t know that I’ll actually make one—it’s not a style I really wear—but the photos and write-ups seem like they’ll be helpful for future knits sewing.

3. This “Hostile Questions” interview series for authors is pretty amusing.

4. Is anyone going to LJ‘s Day of Dialog next week by any chance? I’m moderating a panel with Chelsea Cain, Lisa Scottoline, Rainbow Rowell, Sophie Littlefield, Pamela Nowak, Lauren Oliver, and an editor from Harlequin’s Mira line. We’re going to be talking about all sorts of issues and ideas around writing and marketing to, for, and about women and I’m pretty excited about it.

5. I’ve still finding my feet on Instagram, but I really, really love seeing all the photos from Dutch Flower Line first thing every morning.

Five for Friday

fuzz1. My wedding was featured on Rock and Roll Bride earlier this week!

2. I’m still really digging making soap. I upgraded my equipment a bit this week and bought a no-line acrylic slab mold that comes with dividers to make evenly sized bars. Lining the mold has always been just about my least favorite part of the whole process, at least partly because I’m so bad at it, so I’m really happy to have a way around that. I made a batch of bay laurel and vetiver–scented soap last night that’ll be ready to unmold when I get home tonight. I’m pretty excited about this one, I can tell you. My apartment smelled AMAZING while I was working on it. I just want to make soap all the time; my bullet journal is rapidly filling up with ideas for scent combinations and different proportions of oils to use and things to mix in.

3. A few days ago, I got a galley of Kim Werker’s new book, Make It Mighty Ugly, and I’m pretty excited to spend some time with it this weekend.

4. I was down with a nasty, brutish cold for most of this week—I took two days off in a row because I was feeling so lousy, which I can’t remember doing maybe ever before in my working life. The only good thing to come of it is that I’ve remembered how much I love a good bowl of orzo in broth when I’m feeling poorly.

5. I just started watching True Detective. Now I get why the entire internet was obsessed with it a month or so ago. That is what you might call some compelling shit.

A cabled cardigan to transform me into Stella Tennant

This time of year, it can be hard to rally a tremendous amount of enthusiasm to work on this kind of project–it’s far enough from done that even if I devote all of my knitting time to it for the next month or so, it won’t be done before it’s too hot to wear it–except that it’s extraordinarily nice to knit. The yarn is gorgeous, a multistrand cashmere/merino from School Products that I’ve been hoarding for close to a decade; the color is basically the best color, a rich, heathery navy/purple/black that’s surprisingly tricky to photograph; and the simple cables are easy to work but produce a lush, plush fabric that I basically want to wrap myself up in forever, or at least until the temperature climbs much north of 60. The back is done and I’ve cast on for one of the fronts.


This was my inspiration for it, a tear sheet I’ve had kicking around long enough to forget where it’s from. I love everything about it: the cozy sweater, the gorgeous dress, the setting, her luminous skin and wacky bedhead, her feline friend, the enamel basin of … berries, let’s say, the eccentric-highborn-English-ladyness of it all. As much as I love looking at Marion Cotillard in Dior, my idea of chic is much closer to Stella Tennant with oxfords and socks under her gown and a cat at her feet.


And speaking of feline friends, Fuzz Ferdinand is keeping pretty busy being super handsome all the time.