Monday, July 31, 2017

Monday So Soon??

Hello All,

Here we are - already back at the beginning of a week.  Not sure how that happened so quickly.

Thank you all for your comments/concern about Tyg.  He is fine.  Turns out he has allergies!  Ever since we rescued him we've been aware of how he dislikes the heat.  Come the summer and the hot weather his lips get all red and sometimes puffy.  Well this year that hasn't happened as much, but he has been scratching more than normal (no fleas, thank goodness) and apparently has scratched himself raw!  The vet did give him all his shots which he was due for in August and we have prednisone to put in his wet food each morning and a medication to put on his scratchy areas which will reduce the itchiness.  He was pretty lethargic both Friday afternoon and Saturday (shots will do that), but by Sunday he was already noticeably improved.  He is not scratching as much and the areas he had been scratching are much, much improved.  He doesn't like the gel stuff we rub on him, but it's working!

The weekend was really nice.  Saturday was pretty grey, but we never got the forecast rain.  We did grocery shopping in the morning including checking out a new place called "Foodery" billed as having "Food and Beer From Around the World."  It was almost ALL beer and wine.  That is not necessarily a bad thing, but don't advertise food from around the world if you only have a few snacks and deli items.  But, at least now we know.  I walked by myself that afternoon for a little over an hour in Valley Forge Park.  It was so humid that I was dripping by the time I got back to the car.

Sunday was gorgeous.  I ran errands in the morning and walked again in Valley Forge for over an hour. 

A little knitting was done - not a lot, but some. 

I've turned the heel and am in the midst of decreasing gusset stitches on the 2nd sock.  The end is in sight!!

Today should be a relatively easy day and I'm looking forward to yoga tonight.  Hope you all had a wonderful weekend as well!

Friday, July 28, 2017

Friday At Last

Hi All,

Welcome to Friday!  At last!!

I had the most wonderful massage last night.  When I got home, Colin was there having dinner with Fletch (Mailing had another work function).  I expected to be extremely lazy, but instead felt energized, so Colin and I took another hour plus walk - this time in part of Valley Forge Park.  A very pretty trail and we even saw two little fawns.

They looked like twins - so sweet.  Not too many folks on the trail (but it was getting dark).  And it was so humid - my tee shirt was soaking wet by the time we got back to the car.

Today will be fast at work.  I need to leave by 1 to get Tyg to the vet.  He is due for shots, etc. (I think she - the vet - calls it a "well check!!") in August, but he has a little wound on his neck that continually opens.  I don't really think it's anything to be concerned guess is that as it heals it starts itching and then Tyg scratches it and re-opens the wound.  But we felt it best to have him seen.

No real plans for the weekend.  I have some major cleaning that really needs to be done and the frig definitely needs to be cleaned out and wiped down.  Hopefully I'll be able to get some knitting and stitching accomplished (I'm at the heel flap on the 2nd sock!!).  We are supposed to have rain today and tomorrow and the temps are forecast to be low (70's), so perfect weather to stay in and do stuff.

Wishing you all a fun weekend doing whatever you want!!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Unraveled Wednesday 7-26-17

Hello All,


It is a grey day here, but I’m enjoying it – a nice break from the heat we’ve been having.


Joining Kat and friends once again.  Not as much knitting or stitching has gone on this past week.  I did work on the 2nd sock which I shared yesterday and I did get two more squares knit on my blanket:



No stitching on the sampler though…hopefully I will get to that this week or over the weekend.


On the reading front, I wrapped up Britt-Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman.  Definitely not as wonderful as A Man Called Ove, but it was good.  It took me a little while to get into it, but I did enjoy.  Backman definitely has a way with characters in his books and I enjoy that.  I am now reading The Way Life Should Be by Christina Baker Kline (who wrote Orphan Train).  This is turning out to be a light – sort of beachy read.  It’s ok, but not wonderful writing.  I’m waiting for my hold on A Piece of the World by her to come in.  I think that will be better.  Meanwhile I need to pull out my Bingo Card and fill in some squares - I keep forgetting to do that - lol.


Colin stopped by for dinner last night as Mailing had some work function going on.  Fletch grilled some steaks and we tried the pickled green beans which were just ok…neither Fletch nor Colin liked them very much (Fletch thought they were too vinegary…I just thought the beans were too tough).  What was left of them has gone into the compost.  Glad I only made one jar!!  Luckily I had also roasted some Brussels sprouts and made garlic bread.  My boss had brought me several heads of garlic from his garden on Monday.  Oh yum!!!  Used some of that on both the bread and the sprouts.  So good!  Colin and I walked for an hour after dinner.  It was such a pleasant evening for a walk.  We finished up just as it was really getting dark.


Over the weekend I noticed a bug/insect flying around that I had never seen before.  Unfortunately, Colin found it dead out by the garden.  Does anyone know what this is?  It was really pretty with the double wings.



I think today is going to be slow-slow-slow at work.  I brought the sock to work on, so will definitely take a lunch break today.


Happy mid-week to you all!!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

A Foody Post

Hi Everyone,


Wow!  Another very strong storm last night while I was at yoga.  (And yoga was fabulous – only two of us in the class last night – just like a private lesson!!)  Strong winds and 2” of rain within 30 minutes or so.  It cooled things off so well.


This morning the air felt so refreshing.  I was just about to go out on the patio with my coffee when I noticed the mama doe and 3 (!!) spotted fawns in the yard.  A number of apples have fallen from our tree and they were busy cleaning up.  I wish they would learn to chew with their mouths shut though – lol.  The fawns stayed far enough away that I wasn’t able to get a clear shot of them with my phone, but here is the mama:



We had such a nice weekend.  Grocery shopping Saturday morning and then a pedicure in the early afternoon.  Around 4 we headed up to Colin & Mailing’s for dinner.  What a feast!  We had drinks and some appetizers first:  deviled eggs, home-made roasted mixed nuts with fresh rosemary and dried pepper flakes (so good!!), home-made salsa with chips.  I tried not to load up on that because I wanted to eat dinner too.


Although not vegetarians, both Colin and Mailing have cut way back on the amount of meat they eat.  Saturday’s dinner was delicious and all home-made.  We had tabouli salad, falafel and baba ganoush.  I was too busy scarfing down the food to take any pictures.  After dinner we took an hour and a half walk.  There are miles of walking trails near where they live in Bucks County (I wish we had those where I live).  When we got back to their place we had fresh fruit salad for dessert.  It was all so refreshing.


We had another strong storm on our way home – raining so hard you could barely see the road (luckily Fletch was driving).


I spent most of Sunday cooking.  Fletch picked some green beans from the garden and I pickled them.  Hopefully they are good because we’re going to try them tonight!



I didn’t do such a great job of keeping the beans upright in the jar, but I’m more interested in flavor than appearances – lol.


Then I poached a roasting chicken, let it cool and made chicken salad for dinner.  I saved all the bones, etc. to make stock later. 


Fletch had also picked rhubarb and I made a rustic tart with the rhubarb, some blueberries, blackberries and raspberries. 


In between the cooking I did manage to do a little bit of knitting on the 2nd sock.

I don’t want to jinx myself, but it seems to be going a little quicker than the first (thank God).
Hoping everyone is having a good week.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Monday Q&A

Hi All,

Welcome to Kathy B's weekly Q&A.  Why don't you join in the fun??

1. Do you remember a bad sunburn?  Too many bad ones as a teenager – I had no sense at all!


2.  What is the last game you played?  Gosh it’s been so long, I can’t remember.  Probably Scrabble.


3.  Do you have a statue in your house of any kind.  Nope, but we do have a head on one of our living room walls!


Now I want a gargoyle or two like Dee has!!

4. Have you seen the new needle that threads your safety line for lace?  No, but that has got to be GREAT!


5.  Why do they call them point protectors when they are really stitch protectors keeping your stitches from falling off?  They are both!  They keep those pesky stitches on, but they also prevent me from poking myself – lol


6.  What kind of knitting has dominated your summer knitting?  I thought it would be socks, but it appears to be shawls!


7.  Have you seen an ice cream truck this summer?  I think I passed one on the way home from work one day, but there seem to be fewer around this year.


8.  Cold summer salad preference:  Pasta? Bean? Fruit?  Oh gosh!  I love them all.  Fruit salad is so refreshing, but I love a good pasta salad with plenty of veggies in it.


9.  Your favorite summer sandals are made by . . .  I live in my Nike flip flops at home.  At work I have a few pairs of sandals I wear – nothing special – and some ballet flats.


10.  Do you have a favorite old photograph taken in the summer?  There’s one of me sitting on a rock by the lake in Vermont we went to each summer.  Not sure where that is.  I also love a photo I have in my kitchen of my parents sitting on a rock at Hawk Mountain (but that was probably taken in Spring or Fall).  I think I love rocks – lol.


Friday, July 21, 2017

Friday Miscellany

Hello All,

Welcome to Friday!  It's supposed to be another scorcher in the Philadelphia area, but for now the sky is a bit cloudy which I welcome...keeping the heat away for a bit longer.

Discovered yesterday that our Milkweed is blooming!  So pretty and so very fragrant.  Hoping the butterflies will come.

Other than green beans (of which there are plenty to an over-abundance), things are a bit slow in the garden.  our cherry tomatoes are beginning to ripen, but we only get 2-4 at a time.

Our regular tomatoes are forming, but are still very, very green.  I love fried green tomatoes, but really would prefer to have some ripe ones first.

I'm growing two eggplant plants in an old cast iron pot that we keep near our patio.  They have been blooming like crazy and we finally noticed the beginning of fruit on them.  Can't wait.  I love grilled eggplant and it's really good on pizza too.

I've got a conference call this morning and then need to run out to the liquor store.  Mary posted about a frozen watermelon drink yesterday that I MUST make.  Just need the St. Germain and discovered last night that we are very low on gin.  Not sure how that happened....then I'm off to Trader Joe's to pick up a few things.

It's Friday and also still summer, so I leave work at 3 today.  YAY!  The only thing we have going on this weekend is dinner at Colin & Mailing's tomorrow night.  Looking forward to that.

Last night I managed to cast on the 2nd sock and knit about 2/3 of the cuff...need/want to make significant progress on that this weekend.

I'll leave you with a bunch of cuteness.  Marcel (one of Colin & Mailing's cats) turned 4 on Monday.  This is such a cute shot of their cats in younger days -- Talbot with his beautiful arm (I love that mark of white) around Marcel.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Unraveled Wednesday 7-19-17

Well Howdy!

Hard to believe it is already past the mid-mark of July.  Don't hate me, but I am excited for Fall (my most favorite season).  Other than fresh garden produce, I'm not really all that fond of summer - especially since I no longer sun (I did used to be a sun worshiping fool, but no more).  Anyway, past mid-July and here we are mid-week again and time to join Kat and friends for Unraveled Wednesday.  Here's what's been going on in my world.

My cozy blanket is coming along, albeit slowly -- it can't be anything but slow!  But I do now have four squares!

The sampler is progressing nicely.  I finished up the latest dividing band and started in on the next section (still plenty of stitching left on this one):

And...drumroll...I have a finish!  Or a HO as Dee would say (in that it is the first sock of - hopefully - a pair):

This one lonely sock has taken FOREVER to complete (I started it on April 4th!!).  I'm not sure if I just got tired of socks (heaven forbid), or the yarn was bothering me or what.  The pattern is Spring Socks Orla (free on Ravelry) and the yarn is by Black Bunny Fibers (color is Estuary).  The yarn is beautiful and soft, but I found it to be a little bit splitty - I had to really watch it all the time.  I used size 1 needles, and this sock is VERY tight on moi.  My feet aren't particularly fat (at least I think not!!), but I do have an extremely high instep.  At any rate, I think the pair (once complete) will go into the gift pile.  Now I just need to cast on the second one right away.  I thought the yarn and needles were in my bag that I bring to work, but I just discovered they are not.

On the reading front, I finished South of Broad by Pat Conroy and loved it.  His writing is so beautiful (in my opinion).  I have not loved all his books, but I have loved his writing.  I am now in the midst of Britt Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman (author of A Man Called Ove).  I'm enjoying it, but it hasn't grabbed me like Ove did.  I forgot to look at my Bingo card to see where I am...don't believe I'm at a bingo yet, but I'm having fun with Summer Bingo.

That's it from my world on this HOT July Wednesday.  Hope your week is going well!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Monday's Q&A

Hello All,

Welcome back from the weekend!  Kathy B has another fun Monday Q&A:

*Have you ever changed up a S’more?

Nope.  I’m not really a fan of S’mores.

*What yarn is on your needles?  (That you will work on today?)

Sock yarn!  Brought to work – my cozy memory blanket currently working on a square in a KnitPicks yarn.  On the sock needles at home:  Black Bunny fibers yarn for the pair of socks that is taking the longest time ever!!

*You can have a gift certificate to Knit Picks, Etsy, or Webs.  Which do you choose?

Knit Picks!

*What’s your middle name?  Do you use it at all?

Ellen.  My full name was used a lot when I was young because my Mom was also Vera.  Now-a-days it is not used much.

*Last place you went that took cash only

Can’t remember – either a vendor at a fiber festival or a small food vendor.

*Have you ever had Baked Alaska?

Yes!  My Mom would make it usually once a year or so.

*Give a yarn skein a name that reflects the nighttime

Shooting Star – deepest, darkest blue shot through with trails or white or yellow.

*Bar soap, foam soap or liquid hand soap?  (in your bathrooms)

In the shower – Araignee’s soap (THE BEST).  By the sink for washing my face – Araignee’s soap (THE BEST).  To wash hands:  foaming soap (love that too)

*Last time you got a ticket?

Hmmm, believe it was before I got married, so probably 39 or 40 years ago!

*Last time you had a car-hop bring your carry out to you?

When I was a youngster – at an A&W in Vermont.  I loved going there.


The weekend was lovely.  Had a great time with my friend Leslie on Friday night.  The new (to me) Mexican restaurant was just okay.  I had vegetarian enchiladas and Leslie ordered fish tacos and we shared everything.  The food was average and they were unwilling/unable to modify some items to not include jalapenos for Leslie, and our margaritas were weak.  But, the main issue was the noise volume.  The music was blaring and there was so much noise echoing around that it was difficult to have a conversation without shouting.  Not a place I will go back.  We ended up at a Starbucks for after dinner coffee.  Despite that, it was wonderful to see Leslie again.


The rest of the weekend rolled into place with nothing on the agenda.  I got laundry done and grocery shopping and other than that I read and knit and stitched.  Pretty much a perfect weekend if you ask me!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Friday Felines

Hello all,


Last night we had some very heavy downpours which have brought us some relief from the high, high temps we have been having all week.  It is still very humid, but at least it is not in the 90’s!


Look at these two cuties:



Marcel on the top shelf and Talbot on the bottom.  They love to get in the upper cabinets in Colin & Mailing’s kitchen.  And, Marcel loves to bask in the sunlight:



He is quite the fluffy kitty!!


My best friend Leslie drove up from NC yesterday for a wedding this weekend, so she and I are getting together for dinner tonight.  We are going to check out a new (to me) Mexican place that is supposed to have some very creative and delicious Margaritas as well as “true” Mexican food (as opposed to Tex-Mex).  YUM!!


Other than that, no plans for the weekend other than the usual chores.  I’m hoping for plenty of time to knit, read and stitch.  Hoping you all have a fabulous weekend!!