Category Archives: Knitting

Vintage Knitting Patterns: Hand Knits for Men (reposted from 2007)

Mayhem presents…

“Um, what am I doing?” -Mayhem

Never mind, May… Let’s peruse Hand Knits for Men (revised, 1961), shall we? Feel free to caption amongst yourselves, although let’s try not to make my hit statistics too interesting, eh?! In a rare show of restraint, I’ve confined my captions to the picture titles – hover your mouse pointer over the pictures to see. ;)








Ligamentary, my dear linkity

Congrats to wusswoo, who won Cleave (Cutting Cords #3) by Mickie B. Ashling! Cleave is being released today by Dreamspinner Press.

Congrats to Logan, who won the signed paperback copy of The Talker Collection by Amy LaneThe Talker Collection is being released by Dreamspinner Press today.

Congrats to Jane O, who won Bennie’s Wish by Xara X. Xanakas (plus swag)!

Congrats to Wendy, who won Absolutely Eric (Boston Boys #2) by Erica Pike! Absolutely Eric is being released today by MLR Press.




Do, Think, Learn, Make





Cool or Wha…?



  • Bacon cat toy – it looks like Chaos in that picture, but it’s not!

Teh Cute

Reading Update
The Persistence of Memory (Mnevermind #1) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. Excellent alternate reality m/m romance about a mneomographer who’s lost his confidence after accidentally changing his dad’s reality… permanently. And then he runs into something inexplicable during an mneming session… Totally sucked into this, and impatiently waiting for the next segment. *taps fingers*
Hard Tail by JL Merrow. ebook. Very good m/m romance about an accountant, freshly laid off and from his job and newly left by his wife, who ends up running his brother’s bike shop while his brother is in the hospital. Since he’s not gay, why does he spend so much time staring at the bike mechanic’s arse?
My True Love Gave to Me (Brook Street #0.5) by Ava March. ebook. reread. Very good historical holiday m/m romance about young love, fear, and trying for a second chance, even if you’re not sure you deserve one.
Thief (Brook Street #1) by Ava March. ebook. Very good historical m/m romance about a peer who heads to a gambling hall of a certain repute to find out whether, as he suspects, he’d be wasting his time looking for a bride. The man he meets that night proves that, but is ever so mysterious…
Fortune Hunter (Brook Street #2) by Ava March. ebook. Very good historical m/m romance about a man who returns to England planning to marry an heiress so he won’t have to work; he’s not going to let anything, even friendship, stand in his way. This one really got to me. *blots eyes*
Rogues (Brook Street #3) by Ava March. ebook. Very good historical m/m romance about two men who’ve been friends since childhood and occasional lovers since their teens. Both are notorious rakehells, although one prefers men and the other women. But the whole balance of their friendship is about to change… I got sniffly reading this one, too.
Acrobat by Mary Calmes. ebook. Very good m/m romance about an English professor who spends a lot of time taking care of the teen living next door and who’s become comfortable with the teen’s uncle over the years, but never really noticed just how attractive said uncle was… until recently.
Frog by Mary Calmes. ebook. Sweet m/m romance about a cowboy who’s always traveling between rodeos and short-term jobs, only visiting his not-quite-a-boyfriend in San Francisco a few times a year. Because… how could he be a cowboy if he stayed?
Smoking Is Bad for You by Sasha L. Miller. ebook short. Very good short m/m story about two guys meeting under interesting circumstances and proceeding from there. This would get a PG-13 rating, so be aware.
Tumble Turn by Charlie Cochrane. ebook. Good m/m romance about a Paralympic swimmer who’s always planned to avoid romantic entanglements until after the 2012 Paralympics, but life has other plans… As others have noted, the British voice in this is very, very strong.
Dirty Little Secret (Dear Lake, Michigan #2) by Anah Crow & Dianne Fox. ebook short. Ok short m/m story about a guy who reaches a gay-friendly resort town in Michigan just as his married boyfriend sort of dumps him over the phone. This was way too short to be satisfying for the amount of story. Be aware this has an HFN ending.

Finally finished my sister-in-law’s Christmas (2011) socks! 🙂

“I love me some stripey socks!!” -Mayhem

Linkity, now with knitting finished object!

Congrats to Leni, who won Sebastian’s Wolves by Valentina Heart!

Congrats to Susan C, who won The Duty of a Beta (Pack Discipline #3) by Kim Dare! The Duty of a Beta will be released by Total-E-Bound on March 7.



  • A book bed! (This is SFW; rest of site is NSFW.)


Learn, Do, Think, Make


  • Speaking of rainbows, I finished this subdued rainbow toddler jacket last weekend (project details on Ravelry, if you’re interested):



Teh Cute

Reading Update
GhosTV (PsyCop, Book 6) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook Excellent m/m paranormal romantic suspense in which Vic and Jacob head to California to find their friend Lisa, who’s vanished without a trace. Definitely looking forward to the next book! (I read this book twice this week: I read it as soon as I bought it, then I reread all the other PsyCop books and read it again.)
Among the Living (PsyCop, Book 1) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. reread. Excellent m/m paranormal romantic suspense about a PsyCop, who can see ghosts even though he really would prefer not to. After I read GhosTV, I needed more Vic and Jacob. 🙂
Thaw (PsyCop, Book 1.1) by Jordan Castillo Price. free ebook short. reread. Sweet short m/m romance about Vic and Jacob going ice skating.
Criss Cross (PsyCop, Book 2) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. reread. Very good m/m paranormal romantic suspense that takes place a few weeks after Among the Living. Jacob’s staying with Vic while looking for a new condo, and Vic has a creepily eager-to-please new partner at work.
Striking Sparks (PsyCop, Book 2.1) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook short. reread. Steamy short m/m encounter about a guy who’s too late to get his palm read by the fortune teller in Crash’s building and runs into Crash instead…
Many Happy Returns (PsyCop, Book 2.2) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook short. reread. Steamy m/m short about Crash attempting to exchange a shirt at SaverPlus.
Mind Reader (PsyCop, Book 2.3) by Jordan Castillo Price. free ebook short. reread. Good m/m short about Vic and Crash wandering around a museum.
Body and Soul (PsyCop, Book 3) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. reread. Very good m/m paranormal romantic suspense in which Vic gets another new partner at work and Jacob continues hunting for an unhaunted place to live.
Stroke of Midnight (PsyCop, Book 3.1) by Jordan Castillo Price. free ebook short. reread. Very good short m/m romance, told from Jacob’s point of view, about him going to a New Year’s party alone because Vic got called into work.
Secrets (PsyCop, Book 4) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. Very good paranormal m/m romantic suspense in which Vic and Jacob’s living situation changes dramatically and Vic stumbles upon an epic conspiracy.
Camp Hell (PsyCop, Book 5) by Jordan Castillo Price. ebook. Excellent m/m paranormal romantic suspense in which Vic experiences some personal growth (beyond his paranoia, even!), and both Vic and Jacob have unexpected professional growth.
A Change of Scenery by J.M. Cartwright. ebook. Good m/m romance about a construction project manager who’s frustrated by his job in Chicago, so he takes a job in a small West Virginia town.

*hee hee* “No one will notice I’m sticking my tongue out at them, because I look so noble and dignified!” -Chaos

In which Mayhem discovers stripey socks on the floor

I finished knitting these socks a bit after midnight on December 22. I knew I’d be mailing them over my lunch break that day, so I took pictures as soon as they were finished. When I set the socks on the floor, Mayhem woke from a deep sleep and came over to see what was up.

“Hey!! Stripey socks!!” -Mayhem

“Yup, definitely stripey socks. I approve of their bright pinky purpleness!” -Mayhem

“Oh, nice texture, too.” -Mayhem

“Were you trying to take pictures of stripey socks without my assistance?! For shame, Mom, for shame.” -Mayhem

“Ok, carry on, then.” -Mayhem

The yarn is Grignasco Strong Print, colorway 013, and the pattern is a basic blueberry waffle.

In which Mayhem appears to be very happy that there are socks on the floor

Back in, um, February, I started a pair of socks for my SIL’s birthday in early March. *hopes no one notices what date it is now* Those socks are now complete!

“Socks on the floor! Yay!!!!” -Mayhem

“Is there a problem?” -Mayhem

Apparently you’ll just have to imagine what the rest of the socks look like…

“Socks! I love socks! Even if they aren’t stripey.” -Mayhem

I even started knitting a new pair of socks for myself.

“Stripey! Hurry up, Mom.” -Mayhem

Yes, dear…

Hopefully all the knitters were near padded surfaces when they collapsed from the shock of seeing knitting on the blog. 😉

Sorry, no room in the portable kitty caves today. Move along.

Congrats to Lily, who won the copy of Mobry’s Dick by K.Z. Snow, which is being released today from Loose Id. (Congrats, K.Z.!)

  • It’s been ages since I did a random update on my life and stray thoughts.
  • When last we spoke, I was worried whether the new refrigerator would arrive before the old refrigerator died.
  • It did!
  • The new refrigerator was delivered on April 29 by two guys who were unnaturally cheerful about carrying refrigerators up and down three flights of stairs at 7:30 am.
  • The new refrigerator is more spacious despite being smaller (I know!) and is quieter.
  • The kitties remain deeply suspicious of it.
  • On Saturday, I finally wandered over to the hardware store and picked up a patch for the screen.
  • I’m sure the kitties are sad about that.
  • Yes, her birthday was two months ago.
  • Give me a break – it’s nearly 80F, so she’s not going to be wearing wool socks for months!
  • Sheesh.
  • I’m trying to figure out what the three sickly trees in front of our building are.
  • I know that they are not ashes, elms, oaks, maples, boxelders, lindens, any sort of evergreen, sycamores, gingkos, hophornbeams, cottonwoods, or aspens.
  • You’d think I’d get a bit further than that with a forestry degree, wouldn’t you?
  • Quit laughing, Mel. (We have the same undergraduate degree.)
  • Hmm. Apparently I’ll be leaving both cat carriers portable kitty caves out for a while. I hate to discourage this sort of behavior:

*….zzzzzz….* -Mayhem

*….zzzzzz….* -Chaos

In which Jeanne conducts an experiment involving Mayhem and knitting

Congrats to elaing8, who won the copy of Deadly Obsession by Kris Norris!

It turns out that for years, Jeanne has believed I stage those knitting pictures (well, back when I had regular knitting pictures!) in which Mayhem sniffs, gnaws, or lounges about on every single piece of knitting I place on the floor. Jeanne decided she needed to see for herself what really happened when knitting is placed on my living room floor.

So, when she was visiting recently, she waited until there weren’t any kitties in the living room, got up from her chair, and placed her gorgeous sock on the floor. Before she made it back to the chair, Mayhem appeared!

“Hey, what’s up? Did I hear knitting hit the floor?” -Mayhem

“Oh, look at that. Where did this stripey sock come from? Mom, I know you’re not knitting much of anything these days.” -Mayhem


“That’s it? Where’s the other sock? Where are the knitting needles? I like it best when there are knitting needles to chew.” -Mayhem

Anything else to add, Jeanne?? 🙂

Dear City of Minneapolis: I would be much happier if my tap water didn’t smell like dead fish. Thank you.

Congrats to Janna, who won the copy of Julia Barrett’s newly released steamy romance, Beauty and the Feast!

Oh! You only have until 8 pm today (March 17) to enter your picks for DA BWAHA! The grand prize is an iPad…

  • I wish I was kidding in the title about my tap water.
  • Ewww!
  • Minneapolis gets its water out of the Mississippi River.
  • All hail the Brita pitcher!
  • On Sunday, we hit a record-breaking high temperature of 64F.
  • Very, very unusual for March in Minnesota.
  • All the snow is gone, except for the biggest piles.
  • The rivers are flooding, since the snow melted before the ground thawed.
  • Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
  • Is it weirder that my cats have their own email addresses and respond to comments directed at them, or that some of you carry on conversation with my cats in email? 😉
  • I wonder how long I’ll have this post-it reminding me to throw out the scary old eggs in the fridge before I remember to throw out the scary old eggs in the fridge?
  • I continue to slog away on the leg of the first sock.
  • Would you like to see the sock?
  • Tough. You’re going to see it anyway:

“Oh, what have we here?” -Mayhem

“Needles or yarn, needles or yarn – which to bite through first?” -Mayhem

  • Eeep! *rescues sock and needles*
  • Maybe next time I’ll get a cat-free photo.
  • Well, I can always dream, right?! 🙂

Random Post of Randomness and Poop

  • I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that our two weeks of glorious sunshine have given way to a week (so far) of clouds and rain.
  • I miss the sun.
  • The snow is mostly gone, since it’s also been unseasonably warm.
  • I think I’m preparing for the start of Daylight Savings Time this weekend by already feeling tired.
  • Ok, I’m back. The previous reminded me that some of contests from yesterday’s linkity post actually end in EDT/CDT instead of EST/CST. All fixed now.
  • I have started a new pair of socks.
  • I’m already past the heel and into the leg on the first sock!
  • Too bad my sister-in-law’s birthday is tomorrow and I’m sure she really wants two completed socks instead of one sock, 2/3 done.
  • Earlier this week, I was sitting innocently on my couch, type typing away on my laptop when a yowling black blur of stench hurtled past me and shit-o-caust arrived in my living room.
  • *blink blink*
  • What caused this most horrible and inauspicious event?
  • Chaos exiting the litterbox at high speed with poop attached to his butt by one of my hairs that he’d consumed.
  • He was, apparently, fleeing in terror from the poop chasing him.
  • I must have missed the chapter in the cat owner’s manual where it prepared you to have to chase down your pet as he fled from his own poop, hold him down, and clean his butt with toilet paper.
  • Because? I’m pretty sure I’d have remembered that chapter.

“Have no doubt that I will get you for sharing that, Mom. And also? It never happened.” -Chaos

For the First Time, Crazy Aunt Purl’s Kitties Speak Out! [CONTEST CLOSED]

Crazy Aunt Purl (aka Laurie Perry) is nearing the end of her blog tour to support her new book, Crazy Aunt Purl’s Home Is Where the Wine Is: Making the Most of What You’ve Got One Stitch (and Cocktail!) at a Time. Since Laurie’s probably answered every possible question there is to ask about her book at this point in her blog tour, her cats have stepped up to be interviewed… for the first time.

Today, Chaos and Mayhem are excited to welcome Bob, Sobakowa, and Frankie from Crazy Aunt Purl to Stumbling Over Chaos! Bob, Soba, and Frankie live in Los Angeles with Laurie.

Chaos: Excited? We are awake.

Mayhem: Speak for yourself, big kitty! Hi, other kitties!!!!!!!! Mom said you live far away. I hope you don’t live at the vet!! The vet is far away.

And May is a titch excitable… Perhaps you three can begin by telling us a bit about the book?

Soba: All I know is that I’m not on the cover – again – and she’s going to hear from my lawyer.

Chaos: So I heard that you actually wrote this book, Soba, but didn’t get any credit for it. Any truth to that, and if so, why do you let your mom get away with treating you so cruelly?

Frankie: I’m an airhead.
Bob: I’m scared. Or hungry. Or scared. Or hungry.
Soba: Obviously I have a more existential relationship with the manuscript, as my way of working is more self-directed, but I don’t need the recognition of a byline. Lesser cats may feel slighted by indignities like pooping in a box or having a stunt cat pictured on the cover of her human’s book, but I have loftier aspirations. Total world domination.

Chaos: Did you always know you’d be so successful at being crabby, Soba, and can you offer any advice to kitties who’d like to do the same?

Soba: I don’t think of myself as crabby. I think of myself as unfortunately equipped with claws but no thumbs.

Chaos: I feel your pain! The no thumbs thing really sucks, especially since Mom put locks on the cupboards. Hmph. Ok, Bob, you’re so laid back. Any tips for maintaining your boyish cool in a female dominated household?

Bob: Find a quiet spot in the closet.

Mayhem: Do you dye your fur, Bob? No one is that shade of orange!

Bob: I once ate half a bag of cheetos that I found in my human’s handbag. Maybe that did it?

Chaos: Are the rumors about Bob faking his dumbness true? Is it true he really has a degree in Economics, and it’s all an act?

Bob just fell off the bed, and is unable to answer this question.

Mayhem: Ouch. Poor Bob. I bet that hurt. Frankie, how do you deal with the pressure to be beautiful all the time? I myself find it requires many hours of napping to sustain.

Frankie: When you’re naturally gorgeous like me, you don’t feel pressure to stay beautiful because you just are. But finding people to appreciate your beauty nonstop is so hard! They always want to do things like “sleep” and “watch TV” so I have to stand on their stomachs or block the TV. It’s hard work being appreciated for your beauty.

Mayhem: Do you ever see ghosts? I do!!

Frankie: Not since we moved. Now we see more dust bunnies.

Chaos: Is it true that pets that live in California are all famous?

Soba: Only the ones with good representation. Our agent is with CAA….

Mayhem: What’s your favorite flavor of yarn? I like all kinds!!

Bob: I prefer knitting needles to yarn. Much easier to ruin.

Mayhem: Oh, yes, knitting needles are nice, too!!
Chaos: What kind of parties do you have when your mom’s at work?

Soba: I hate cats, so I spend most of the day trying to open the door and get to Starbucks so I can be with my own kind.

Mayhem: Do you have any suggestions on how to get our mom to quit spending so much money on yarn and buy more toys and treats?

Frankie: Have you tried throwing up on the yarn?

Mayhem: Oh, I’ll have to get the big kitty on that. He’s a very pukey kitty.
Chaos: What happens to you when your mom leaves for a while? (We’re pretty sure our mom stood in the hallway for two weeks when she said she was going on vacation, because even she wouldn’t visit the vet for two weeks.)

Frankie: We have a British nanny who stays with us. She’s like supernanny, only taller.

Chaos: How do you punish your mom for leaving you alone?

Bob: Hairballs.
Soba: Targeted furniture shredding.
Frankie: Constant meowing when she returns is really helpful.

Chaos: Oh yeah, I work the constant meowing, too. So very effective, isn’t it?
Mayhem: Is it true that fluffy white birds [snowflakes] don’t fall from the sky in California?

Frankie: We have lint. Does that count?

Chaos: I still miss Roy. Care to share an amusing anecdote about the Old Man?

Bob: He could actually open doors! He was so tall that if he stood on his hind legs and put his paws on the long type of door handles he could open all the doors. It was amazing.

Mayhem: Where does your mom buy your catnip? Does she have an inside line to a reputable source?

Chris breathes a sigh of relief that May didn’t bring up Frankie’s bust for catnip possession last summer.

Frankie: Living in California has its advantages, as we have legalized the catnip trade for medicinal purposes. Soba uses it for her “glaucoma.”

Chaos: Do you like it when your mom has visitors? How do you react? I stand at the front door after Mom buzzes someone in and I greet them with growling and hissing.

Soba: I enjoy discourse with new humans. The other cats hide under the bed and pretend to be invisible, the fools.

Mayhem: Thank you for visiting with us, kitties from faraway!!!!!
Chaos: Whatever.

And thanks for letting your cats visit with us today, Laurie!

Laurie’s publisher HCI has offered five copies of Home Is Where the Wine Is for me to give away, so make sure you mention that you’re entering the contest when you comment.

Contest Rules

  • To enter, leave a comment below stating that you are entering the contest. Leave your comments by 7 pm CST, Thursday, March 4.
  • If you haven’t commented before, your comment will not be visible until after I moderate it. Please do not leave a second comment because your first doesn’t show up!
  • If your comment is actually an advertisement or if your CommentLuv link turns it into an advertisement, your comment will be deleted. (Most of you do not need to worry – this just refers to some pretty clever comment spam.)
  • Winners will be selected by random number.
  • You must leave a valid email address in the “Email” portion of the comment form.
  • Please make sure that your spam filter allows email from!
  • If a winner doesn’t respond to my congratulations email within 48 hours, I will select another winner.
  • Only residents of the US and Canada are eligible to win.
  • No PO Boxes.

Good luck!