Friday, March 24, 2017

TGIF

Hello Everyone,


TGIF.  This has seemed like a long week to me.  I've got my usual conference call at 10 and I'm hoping to get out early today.  We'll see.  Our CEO will be in today and wants me to do a few things for him...hopefully early - lol.


Colin stopped by for dinner last night and tried on the finished sock.  Success!!  He said it fit like a glove...or a sock!  Now I just need to finish the second one which has seen no action for the last 36-48 hours. 


Colin hung around for a little bit and we watched the first episode of Planet Earth II.  Highly recommend - gorgeous photography and David Attenborough narrating.  The first show is all about Islands.  The next one is Mountains.


No real plans for the weekend other than a scheduled appointment tomorrow late morning with the accountant...just have to zip up to her office and drop off all the tax stuff.  Will be glad to have that done!  If the weather holds (it's supposed to be warmer), I hope we can do some archery.


Saw a beautiful fox run across our backyard the other evening.  A gorgeous russet color with a black-tipped tail.  Sometimes I worry about Tyg going out, but he's holding his own (he was out all last night...came in to eat this morning and wanted to go right back out).  Here he is in a more sleepy moment.




Hoping you all have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Hump Day

Hello All,


First of all, thanks so much for all your wonderful comments on my Monday post about my Mom.  She was a fun person for sure.  Fletch reminded me that there are some interesting "things" in her scrapbook, so I will try to show some of them in future posts.  The trip to CA was pretty scandalous for the time...both my Mom and Jennie were from a very small town in Vermont and my Grandfather was the Baptist minister in town...my Grandmother was worried about what people would think of girls in jeans - lol.  More on that in another post.


I'm about half-way done the leg on Colin's second sock.


(picture just taken at my desk moments ago).  I'll do some more at lunch and hopefully be at the heel flap by tonight.


So, what to knit next?  I have the yarn to knit Sigla but that is a Winter sweater (of course I couldn't have started it back in January, right?), though I'd really like to knit it.  I also started Mick Jagged some time ago, didn't like my joins and ripped it out...I could do that.  Or, I could start some Spring socks for myself (I'd love to knit up that rhubarb yarn I bought out in Lancaster not too long ago).  And let's not forget that I'm going to the Steel City Fiber Festival in 2.5 weeks.  I've already put together a list of yarn I need for certain projects (Tales From the Isle of Purbeck or Yoga Shawl or Squad Mitts - another wintery pattern).


Decisions, decisions.  I'll just have to think for some time.


What else?  My little brother and his wife are vacationing (from Colorado) somewhere in the Florida Keys.  He texted me a picture last night from their fishing day where they landed a 5' shark!  He even had a picture of its mouth (gross).  They did release it after they took pictures.  Then he texted a picture of them getting ready to go out in kayaks.  No thank you!!  Dee - I know you do this, but I could not...at least not where there are animals that could "get" me!!


A lot of our snow in the backyard has melted (still some piles) and we may be able to shoot some archery tonight or tomorrow (thanks to longer daylight into the evening), but our temps are dropping again with a forecast only around 39 or 40F today.  But, it's not snowing (or raining), so Fletch is grilling chicken sausage with bacon and pineapple for dinner!  I need to figure out a veggie -- maybe grilled eggplant.


Work is slow today (obviously).  Hoping your Wednesday is going well.  Halfway to the weekend!

Monday, March 20, 2017

First Day of Spring


Happy Spring!!  It is finally here (even if we do still have snow on the ground…it is melting quickly).

 

I am wearing my new shawl (really more of a scarf in my opinion) today and I do love it.  The colors are wonderful.  A craptastic selfie, but the best I can do at work:

 

 

 

And today, in addition to being the first day of Spring, is my Mom’s birthday.  If she were alive, she would be 98!  She was a pretty amazing woman…very independent and adventurous.  When she was 19, she rode her bike from Vermont to Canada, camping out along the way.  The following year she and her girlfriend, Jennie, rode their bikes from Vermont to California!  They camped in fields…or in bad weather spent the night in barns.  Keep in mind these were bikes from back in the 30’s – balloon air tires, etc.  What an adventure.  I have a copy of the scrapbook she put together after that trip (the original one was disintegrating).

 

She was equally adventurous when she was raising me and my three brothers…always up for a trip somewhere.  She loved to hike, play tennis, swim, etc.  My Dad always said that one of the things he loved about my Mom was that she wasn’t afraid to try anything.

 

Here are two pictures of my Mom taken way before I was born.  We found these in a box of photos after my Mom passed away.  I love them.  (Excuse the flash spots --  I took these pictures quickly with my phone at 5:30 this morning.)  These are hanging in our stairway along with other family shots.  Look how skinny my Mom was!

 

 


 



The first one we kids have named “The Gunslinger” – lol.  One of her brothers was an avid trapper and hunter (though usually with a bow) and I’m pretty sure the gun was his.  The second one is a shot of her all suited up and ready to ski.

 

Sadly my Mom’s health deteriorated when she was in her late 70’s, and she passed away in 2004.  I miss her laughter and spontaneity and how she and I would be so silly together.  Happy Birthday Mom!!

 

 

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Almost Spring...and a Finish and a Half

Hello,


Happy Spring, almost.  Tomorrow morning Spring will arrive.  This morning when I looked out the kitchen window I saw a fat robin on a patch of grass that is exposed (we still have quite a bit of snow on the ground).  Also when I looked out the window first thing this morning (while still in bed), I could see some huge sheets of ice hanging off the upper roof ready to fall onto the patio roof.  We've been hearing crashes all morning and stuff is dripping like crazy.  The icy patch at the end of the driveway is gone.  Hooray!


Can you hear the Hallelujah Chorus?  The Oaklet Shawl is finished!!  Woo-Hoo.  I love the colors.  I did not like working with the yarn (KnitPicks Chrome in the Vermont colorway).  And the shawl?  I like it, but am disappointed that it did not block out larger.  It can hang down my back, but then it won't wrap around my shoulders comfortably.  If I wrap it around, then it draws up pretty short in the back.  I would call it more a shawlette than a shawl.  But, the main thing is it is finis!!






So much sunlight today!  This was finished yesterday just before dinner.  And, on Friday night I finished the first of Colin's socks:




The yarn is Regia and the pattern is Petty Harbour (free on Ravelry).  Look at the size of that foot!  This had better fit him...it's big on me, so there is hope.


Also on Friday I made pizza for dinner.  OMG, this was so good.  Trader Joe's pizza crusts (I like their pizza dough too, but these ready-made crusts are fabulous).  Toppings were:  some sauce and oregano, asparagus (which I had par-boiled), black garlic (also from Trader Joe's - it is a fermented garlic and is kind of sweet and smoky), prosciutto, onion slices, marinated artichoke hearts and some mozzarella.






Last night I cooked a turkey breast and roasted some winter squash and Brussels Sprouts with a little butter, maple syrup and cinnamon.  Yay for turkey sandwiches today.


I really do like to eat...more than I should.....


Last night was another one of those nights when I didn't sleep well at all.  I went upstairs around 11, read for a half hour or so and turned off the light.  Fletch came up at 1 and I was still awake and I doubt I fell asleep before 3 a.m.  Tyg woke me at 5 to go out and then I woke up at 7.  I've been in a cleaning frenzy this morning (bathrooms, kitchen floor, several loads of laundry) in the hopes that I will be exhausted tonight and sleep well.  I hate going to work worn out!


See you next season!!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Friday Felines

Hello and Happy St. Patrick's Day!


I've got a conference call at 10 and then my office is having a "Cube Crawl" to celebrate the day.  Folks are decorating cubes to be Irish Pubs!  We've done this for several years and it is a lot of fun.  And...people always provide food - yay!  And...we are having a catered lunch today.  Double Yay!!


Meanwhile, here's a snap of Tyg that I took yesterday when I got home from work.  he's coming across the neighbor's yard.  He likes to go out, walking on snow and listening for little creatures underneath.




Colin just texted me that more snow is expected this weekend...I had only heard rain.  The end of my driveway is still a frozen mess and the snow is still piled up against our front door where it drifted the other day.  Monday is the first day of Spring (and my Mom's birthday).  What the heck???


Hoping to finish the first sock for Colin tonight (was afraid I would be short on yarn, but I think I'm ok) and I "plan" to work on/finish the shawl this weekend.  Hoping to have some finished object pictures early next week.


Enjoy the weekend!!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The Blizzard That Wasn't...Thankfully...

Hello All,


My office announced on Monday that it would not be open Tuesday.  Our blizzard never materialized, but I'm glad I didn't have to go to work.  We had snow, then icy pellets that hit the windows with a loud noise, then freezing rain, then more snow, etc., etc.


I had been all ready to go to yoga Monday night when Maria, my teacher, called to say she was sick and class was cancelled.  Colin was on his way over to spend the night and was picking up Chinese food for himself and Fletch.  I quickly texted him with my order and we settled in for a nice evening.  The boys watched Arrival which I had no interest in seeing (don't really care for SciFi), and I sat in the kitchen and worked on Colin's sock.


Our forecast was for 4-8" overnight, but we only got a few.  Colin was up at 5 and out shoveling and then I took him into work around 7.  At that point, the roads were not bad.


I got home and puttered around.  It was Pi Day, so I had to make a pie!!




Yes, the edges are a little burnt (which I do like)...I was busy texting on my phone and checking blogs and e-mail and time got away from me.  It was good anyway.  Raspberry pie.  Yum.


In the afternoon I baked Cuban Bread.




This is the easiest bread recipe ever (not using a bread machine) and delicious!  It has a great crust and the inside is nice and chewy.


Snowing and sleeting all the while.  Fletch went out to shovel.  He didn't bother with the snow blower, but said it was some of the heaviest snow he had ever had to shovel.  Our neighbor was using his snow blower and it sounded like a sick cow -- just struggling to get through the mess.


I picked Colin up from work (roads were worse, but passable) and he decided to spend another night rather than risk going home after dark on country roads.  I made a big pot of curried shrimp chowder to go with the bread.  And knit some more.  I'm about halfway done the foot on the first sock.  I did not bother trying to work on the shawl.  The wind and ice were too distracting.


Today it is back to work.  I took major roads into my office rather than risking the back roads through Valley Forge Park.  Some side roads are still pretty snow covered and there was a lot of standing water yesterday which is now all ice.  Still bitter cold, so I don't think much of anything will melt today.


I did cut some daffodil buds Monday night...I just didn't want them to all be damaged by the snow.  The buds were extremely tight and I wasn't sure they would open, but as of this morning they have started to open up.  So pretty to have a touch of Spring on my windowsill.


Hoping everyone in the path of the storm made out ok (My girlfriend in the Chesapeake City area of MD lost her power at 9 a.m. yesterday...and is not expecting it back until Noon at the earliest today).  We have the possibility of more winter weather this weekend, but I'm not even going to think about that right now!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Monday's Q&A...the Snowy Version

Hello Everyone,


This week Kathy has divided her Q&A into two groups:  one for the snowy (or soon to be snowy) folks and one for those in warmer climates.  Since I am in the path of the oncoming storm, here's my version:




  1. You are snowed in.  What 3 things do you need to have for a storm?


Plenty of yarn and stitching supplies (check)


Plenty of reading material (check)


Plenty of wine (and other libations) and plenty of food for cooking and baking (check/check/check)


I’m ready to goJ


 


  1. Do you eat corned beef and cabbage?


Well, I made it last year and hated it!  My Mom used to make it several times a year and I always liked it then.  I will not be making it this year.


 


  1. What is your favorite hat pattern to knit?


I’ve only made one hat – the Baable hat which I really like (even if it is a tiny bit small for me).  Once I did knit and then felt a bowl and my son took it and used it for a hat – lol.


 


  1. Are you wearing wooly handknit socks today? What color?


Not today because the boots I am wearing are too tight to wear handknit socks with them.


 


  1. How do you deal with  your hair drying out in the winter?


I was just talking about this with my girlfriend the other day.  Growing up (adolescent thru college and 30’s and 40’s) my hair was fairly oily.  Aging has done away with that problem and now my hair tends to be dry enough that I use Argon Oil on it when I blow it dry.  It seems to be helping a bit.


 




We are forecast to get a foot or more of snow.  I'm not really interested in more winter weather, but I am definitely interested in not going to work tomorrow.  I'm already planning what to make (bread and soup and a pie since tomorrow is Pi Day), what to knit (maybe I can pick up the shawl and finish it??), and what to read (almost finished "News of the World").  Our son is coming over to stay since his office doesn't close unless the stock market closes.  We are only 5-10 minutes from his office, but he lives about 45 minutes away.  Much easier to navigate from our place.  Will be fun to have him around for a night or two!


Everyone in the path of the storm - stay warm and safe.