Apr 20, 2011

Hero Worship

We spent weeks carefully researching dog food before we found one that our dogs loved and we felt one hundred percent comfortable feeding them. We really wanted to go organic but couldn't find one that we could afford that the Zeus loved. He's very picky. We finally decided to go with the Merrick brand dog food. The have a handful of different flavors that the dogs rotate through. We are firm believers that our dogs aren't just pets they're family. If we eat good so do the dogs. They are spoiled and babied. We have a separate charge account so that if they need vet care they will get it.

I'm sure there are a lot of you that are going to go see how much a bag of this dog food goes for. I can save you the trouble, at PetCo I pay around $32 for a 15lb bag. I also take advantage of their pals reward card which gets me a free bag of dog food for every 10 bags I buy. When you read the ingredients on their bags you'll see why they are a lot more costly they include salmon, buffalo, turkey, duck, trout, etc. A lot of cheaper dogs foods use corn meal, Iams and Hills Science Diet which aren't as cheap use corn meal and ground corn as fillers so they can use less meat. If it's the first or second ingredient you can bet there's more of it then meat which makes the food cheap and gives the company a high profit margin. Merrick doesn't use corn in their products. The problem comes in the fact that corn is something a good number of dogs are allergic too or can develop allergies. My mom had a cocker spaniel that was allergic to corn and was put on a expensive perscription diet. I'm betting Sammy would have been able to eat the Merrick foods without a problem. It's also harder for dogs to digest corn. Shoot corn is difficult for humans to digest. The dog food industry is one that's not very well regulated and when you see the by-product on the bag you can bet it's not good. By-product is all the nasty stuff that humans wouldn't consider for consumption. They throw in chicken beaks, feet, hooves, etc...you get the point. Not to mention the fact that they can use diseased animals and euthanized dogs and cats in meat meal and by-product. Can we all just give in a resounding ewwwwwww, gag! I don't know about you but lets just say I'm not willing to take a chance that one of these things is in my dogs food. Yuck, yuck, yuck, gag! That's just nasty and wrong on so many levels. So I pay more for my dog food because I think my dogs deserve to eat real meat.

Our household (for the humans) buy high quality fruits and veggies and we generally go organic whenever possible. Fresh is best but if we can't get fresh we go with frozen. I'm always happy when winter is gone and the fresh fruits and veggies start rolling back in. Farmers markets are always a bonus when we can make it there. We've adjusted our budget to make food more important then frivolous spending. High quality food has always been more important then eating out, video games, expensive cable packages, etc. That's not to say that we don't go out and do things as a family or buy extra stuff. Our kids don't lack in the toy department or want for clothing. We've just learned the hard way that a well balanced budget is an extremely important thing to have. 

But anyways, off my soap box and on to the real hero worship thing. The dogs were looking at me this morning with what I can only be call hero worship. We decided to pick up some canned Merrick dog food to give the dogs a treat. We give them a small amount in their morning bowl of dog food so the can lasts 2 days. We want them to eat more dry dog food because it's important for the tooth and gum health. It helps keep the tarter build up down. This morning was Smothered Comfort. Oh my goodness that stuff smelled good. It has really chunks of roasted chicken, carrots, apples, sweet potatoes, blue berries. You want to give your dog a treat, give them this stuff! They'll look at you with hero worship in their eyes. This is not your standard canned dog food mush it looks and smells like homemade human food. 

Anyways, on to the knitting portion of this post. I have a few things that I finished up or have started.

First up the nylon scrubbies I made for my granny.

image from www.flickr.com
I used nylon netting I picked up from Season Decorator who sells on ebay. The rolls are 6 inches wide but for 50 cents you can have them cut it in half which is the perfect width for making the scrubbies. I got these 4 and one more that I didn't like because it was knit on needles that were too small out of one 3 inch wide 40 yard roll. I used US size 11 needles. If you have bamboo needles that need to be smoothed down knit with nylon netting. My cheapo bamboo ebay special needles are smooth as a babys butt now. :~)

I've started a new pair of socks for Bree.

image from www.flickr.com
These are being knit with a skein of Apple Laine apple pie sock yarn I bought from The Loopy Ewe several years ago. The colorway is Pretty in Pink. I'm using my basic toe up with a short row heel pattern but this time I'm going to use the ruffled cuff instructions for Sydney (ravelry). Sorry I only have a Ravelry link. The pattern is from Toe Up! Patterns & Worksheets to Whip Your Sock Knitting Into Shape by Chrissy Gardiner.

I decide to change to the Embossed Leaves (Ravelry) socks for my YOSS April sock pattern.

image from www.flickr.com
I picked out some Zen Yarn Garden Serenity 20 sock yarn out of my stash and started knitting away. I've made a few changes in the pattern. I hate twisted ribbing so I swapped to a k1, p1 cuff. I also worked a slip stitch heel instead of the stockinette one the pattern calls for. I'm also going to knit a regular toe instead of following the pattern.

I'll end this post with my babies who have passed out with contentment. 

image from www.flickr.com
image from www.flickr.com

Happy Crafting!

Apr 5, 2011

A Few FO's

Holy cow another post and it hasn't even been a month. Shoot it's only been a week since the last post. Shocking really.

No new yarn to post about. We're not buying anything that isn't absolutely necessary until the national budget has been fixed and I know for sure that Shawn and I will be getting our paychecks. It's t minus 3 days and counting before the possibility of a government shutdown. I'm planning on refraining from spending money on yarn and fiber even after everything is resolved because we have a move to save for. The less yarn I buy means the more we can put into savings. I've already got a nice chunk saved and I really hope we won't need to use it to survive. That doesn't mean I won't be getting yarn because I get paid in yarn for my Woolgirl test knits and I've already signed up and paid for the Twisted Fiber Art club. The only other frivolous yarn spending I've done is to sign up for the Margaritaville kit from Woolgirl.

The military will reemburse us for most of our travel expenses  for our final move however we won't have the lovely little government charge card to use which means we have to either a.) have the money in savings or 2.) have a credit card we can charge it all to. We'd rather pay for everything outright without having to incure interest on anything. Generally you're reembursed for everything fairly quickly but anyone that has ever had to deal with the military knows that things can go wrong and when they do they go waaaaaaay wrong. I'd rather not pay interest on that if I don't have to.

I finished my "on the go" socks so I need to start a new one.

image from www.flickr.com
The yarn is Opal (flamingo from the rainforest collection if I remember correctly) sock yarn and when all was said and done I had to weave in 5 different spots not including the normal yarn weaving at the cuff and toe. There was a lot of knots in this yarn. Way more then there should have been. This is my first bad experience with Opal yarn. I have some more in my stash so hopefully it's not full of knots too.

Bree's socks are finished.

image from www.flickr.com
They're just a basic toe up sock with some k2, p2 ribbing at the top. I've already cast on another pair for her in Apple Laine Apple Pie sock yarn.

I've picked some Gypsyknits BFL sock yarn for my April YOSS socks .

image from www.flickr.com
I'm going to knit Leyburn (ravelry)(non ravelry). I'll post a pic when I have a decent amount knit for a progress shot. 

I'll leave you with some pics I snapped of George the other day. Yes that's my desk and yes it's a mess!

  image from www.flickr.com
image from www.flickr.com

These were snapped right after someone rang the doorbell. George's personality is really starting to show. We've discovered that he loves the theme song to Family Guy and will sing and dance when it's on and when George sings and dances it gets Petey to sing.

Happy Crafting!!