Monday, September 17, 2007

I have mentioned that we are bird sitting for my parents' quaker and pair of cockatiels while they are on vacation in Europe. Here are their cockatiels, Jill and Jack, eating millet. I have been having so much fun watching these guys. They are extremely bonded to each other and start frantically calling to each other if they are not right by each other. Occasionally something will scare them and they both go flying off their cage, and they sit there calling to each other, even though they could just turn around to reuinte! But perhaps the funniest thing with them is when they both want their heads preened. They will sit there and offer each other their heads until finally someone gives in and preens the other one first.

And here is their quaker, Alfie. He is a funny little bird, and recovering from some mutilation. My parents spent over $1,000 at the vet, and no reason could be found for the mutilation. They ended up adopting Jack and Jill, hoping to provide Alfie with some additional company, and ever since they joined the flock, he no longer mutilates.

I thought this was a funny picture. Thomas has not played video games for several months, but pulled them out again on Friday. I joked he was like the Pied Piper because as soon as he sat down on the floor, the birds went over to find him (except the cockatiels and Calypso!) Rocky runs over to Thomas any time he is on the floor, hoping to wedge himself in his clothes somewhere. He sits near Max's cage, so she goes over to that side of her cage. First she empties out her foraging bucket by throwing as many things at Thomas as she can; once it's empty, she hangs out on the side of her cage, near him. Beeps almost never leaves his cage, but he did Friday night, to go to Thomas, and then Alfie climbed down to find him as well! We rarely allow parrots on our shoulders because of the potential damage, but Thomas wanted to play video games and they wouldn't leave him alone, so I was able to take this picture!

And of course, a few pictures of Max. Here she is, eating a pellet. I wrap all of her pellets, and I think it is absolutely adorable how she uses the wrapping like a little shell to make sure that she can eat every crumb. What was even funnier about this picture is that she had a dish of seed and vegetables on top of her cage, but she apparently wanted a pellet as she climbed in her cage and found one.

Can you see the marble in her foot? I don't even remember how we figured this out, but she loves marbles! We call them her little treasures. We're not exactly sure what she does with them, but they keep her occupied for 10-15 minutes at a time. She sits there like this, holding it in her foot. Sometimes she rubs the marbles on her head.

Sometimes she holds them in her beak, like this. We hide a few in her foraging bucket and foraging drawers and when she finds one, it's so much fun to watch her ADD-self calm down and treasure her prize.

I am still knitting! Thomas and I are taking a trip to Prague in November, so I am making each of us a Prague scarf. I made mine first, out of this gray boucle yarn. I cast on 20 stitches, but somewhere in my novice knitting world, I ended up adding another stitch, so it was 21 for most of the way! I had hoped to do some sort of pattern, but boucle yarn is not the best yarn for novices to use, so I just did knitting. I didn't measure the scarf, but it is longer than I am tall (5'6"). On Friday, Thomas and I stopped at a yarn store and purchased the yarn for his scarf. My scarf in enveloping the yarn that will become his scarf.

Everyone has told me that once I start using natural fibers, I may become a yarn snob and no longer able to use acrylic. I fear they may be right! This is the progress I made on Thomas's scarf yesterday. I cast on 21 stitches and am doing a K1P1 pattern. However, I ran into a snag because after I had knit about 8 inches or so, the yarn had come apart and was knotted together! I wasn't sure what to do, so I just knit it in. You can kind of see in this picture that it then came apart! I was worried I would have to pull everything out and start again, but I managed to just pull out about 4 rows and get everything back to how it should be. However, my knitting for the night was paused as I do not know how to start knitting in a detached piece of yarn. My job today is to research that so I can continue knitting tonight (why don't I have the Internet at home!!!!)

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