All of us who work in or for education know that the real beginning of the year is August. If you didn’t make resolutions in January, you now have another chance.

I don’t make resolutions, really, in January or in August, but I do classic time management — a list of goals for the year which derive from my life goals, and then monthly, weekly, and daily goals leading to completion of my annual list of goals, blah blah blah. I start this in January, and August is check-up time. I have completed goals # 1, 2, 3, 6, and 10. I am on track with #8.  I spent July working on numbers 4 and 7. I have been working on # 9, with some success. I have done very little on #5.

But for the month of August, I  can really have only one serious goal: getting everyone back to school. My own kids, of course — we have to arrange clothing and transportation and fill out forms and jigsaw puzzle our schedules together and pay large sums of money and work in haircuts and teeth cleanings and eye appointments and so on. And then there are all the teachers, whose needs and desires dominate my working hours. These things can be overwhelming and exhausting, without trying to add #5 or step up #8.

Still, I have to have some little measly goal to work on. So I have decided to try again to make it all the way through the knitting blogs ring. There are over 700 of them. If I glance at a whole bunch each day, I can have them all glanced at by the beginning of school. And if I don’t succeed, I won’t really care. It is simply the laziest possible goal for the month of August.

And you do find interesting things at knitting blogs. For example, directions on how to make things out of saveloys.

My mention of this website prompted Sighkey to assure me that in New Zealand, they do not make their saveloys into humorous animal shapes. She seemed to feel that this was a good thing. They cook their excitingly-named saveloys (hot dogs to us in Hamburger-a-go-go-land) and pour on tomato sauce (their unexciting word for ketchup, which could I think lead to culinary misadventures in the U.S.). No mention of buns, so I don’t know whether that is a feature of hot dogs in Kiwi-a-go-go-land or not.

We in the U.S. do not normally make hot dogs into humorous animals, either, except for octopi. I have seen this method of making octopi out of saveloys in several American books. You slice the end of a hot dog lengthwise into eight parts, leaving the top intact for the head of the octopus. Then you boil it. In the process, the eight cut parts will curl up into octopus legs, leaving you with a saveloy pretending to be a denizen of the deep. The Japanese website reference above will show you how to cut and paste your remaining saveloys into shark shapes, in order to add further excitement to the whole thing. They will no longer fit into hot dog buns at this point, though, so you must go with barbecue sauce.

And here is the recipe for lemonade to go with your savaloys. “Lemonade” in Kiwi-a-go-go-land appears to be some kind of carbonated drink like 7-Up or something, so we must switch back to American English at this point. The proportions are flexible anyway, so you can use metric measurements if that’s what you have, or tea cups out of the cupboard, for that matter. You can also put a cup of fresh mint into the syrup and strain it out after you boil it, for a really nice summery touch.

Mix 1 1/4 c. sugar and 1/2 c. water in a saucepan and bring it to a boil. Boil it, stirring, till it’s clear. This is called “simple syrup.” Mix it with the juice of a dozen lemons and 4 1/2 c. cold water, and you have a nice big pitcher of lemonade.