Owen will be spending his mornings at Lego Mindstorms Robotics camp for the next 2 weeks, so that makes everything much more peaceful on the homefront. Colin is playing with the girl from next door, so I am blissfully allowed to think a complete thought, get involved with a project, or even, (gasp!) do some badly needed housework. Yep. Everything at our house has gotten so thoroughly YUCKY that it is less stressful to clean it than to keep living with it.
Last night I sent Scott out back to light the grill, because I am grill challenged. I am a master at campfires, even in the rain, but I cannot light a grill. Go figure. Scott had Colin tagging along and noticed something dart under a rotting railroad tie that has been gracing our backyard for a number of years. Without thinking things through, he reached down and lifted the rotting wood to see what it was. It was a yellowjacket nest. They were not happy to have a big human shaking their home and swarmed. Scott got stung right away and he and Colin came running into the kitchen, both carrying on irrationally. Unfortunately, they brought some yellowjackets in with them, which took a few minutes for us to figure out. Colin had one on his shirt and was stung by it. Scott had one in his hair. While we were calming everyone down, applying ice and topical Benedryl, Colin started screaming all over again. One had stung his toe. Poor kid. The hornets continued to swarm angrily out by the grill and we needed a dinner plan. Meanwhile, Colin was suggesting that we should move away from this house Right Away! and come back tomorrow with a truck for our stuff. Now we're in a bit of a bind, because (as many of you know) I'm not one to see pesticides as the first choice solution to this problem. The fact is, that this nest has probably been there all summer and we only had a problem now because a certain Adult Male in the household decided to disturb the nest. Still, I agree that it would be good to persuade the hornets to relocate. We have some extra large, extra heavy duty black garbage bags and I suggested to Scott that we could put one over the nest and that the solar gain would kill the beasts. So, that's the first thing we're trying. Scott got the bag in place last night. It needs a few more weights to keep it snug against the log. My next approach would involve many layers of protective clothing and repeatedly disturbing the nest. I hope it doesn't come to that!
On the knitting front, I have a new Work In Progress with which I am very pleased. It's from the Jo Sharp DK, in Mulberry, and Knit One, Crochet Too Parfait in a putty color. I'm using charts from Anatolian Knitting Designs, which would be one of my Desert Island Knitting Books. I"m not sure if I'll post pictures along the way, as I'm thinking of a Winter Knitty submission. They have had very few patterns that make extensive use of Fair Isle colorwork, and I think this would stand a good chance of being accepted. The thing is, I'm so happy with the way that it's looking I really want to post pictures and gloat. Mutter mutter. I can always do a picture later if I change my mind.
I finished reading Jon Krakauer's Under the Banner of Heaven last night. It was really interesting reading. The cover blurbs make it sound like the book is mostly concerned with one murder case. In fact, most of the book involves recounting the history of the Mormon church and its splinter fundamentalist offshoots, and thereby making the case that in view of this history, the crime in question is not that atypical an event. My father always had an historian's interest in Mormonism and I visited Nauvoo with him when I was a teenager. Krakauer's research for this book involved extensive reading and distilling of previously published histories as well as interviews with practicing and apostate Mormons. As far as I could tell, no new research went into the telling of the history, but he does an excellent job with presenting the history as drawn from previous texts. He makes extensive uses of source material in describing the crime and the aftermath and in presenting a picture of life as it is currently lived in the fundamentalist enclaves. I'd put this on my highly recommended list.
And that's the news from my life.