Friday, September 27, 2019

Friday Miscellaneous

Good Morning!

It's Friday!!!  And it is FOGGY outside, and damp.  Not trying to wish away my days, but today is my last day of work until October 9th!  Yup - I am on vacation once I leave the office this afternoon (hopefully early).  I'll be checking in on your blogs via my phone, but most likely won't be commenting much.  We are taking our camper and heading North.  Once again we will be in the Rhinebeck region of NY a few weeks ahead of NY Sheep & Wool, then heading further North into CT, NH and the coast of ME.  Hoping for gorgeous Fall colors and excellent weather for hiking and exploring.  Yes, I'll do a little yarn shopping, but I'd like to find some different stores/shops since we've covered this area in the past.  I'm sure I'll find something - lol.

Meanwhile, Colin was over last night and brought flowers!

Yes, that's my messy kitchen table (the garlic in the bowl is what we will be planting when we get back from vacation - the "we" is Fletcher - ha!).  The flowers are from Colin's garden at work.  He has had a garden at his corporate office for several years.  Since he and Mailing bought their house in February, he put in a large vegetable garden at home and decided just to throw a bunch of wildflower seeds in his garden bed at work.  He kind of forgot about it until earlier this week he was leaving a meeting and happened to glance out a window by the garden plots and saw a riot of color in his plot.  So pretty.

A surprise package arrived in the mail the other day from my aunt & uncle in Maryland.  My aunt does a lot of charity knitting, but sent me a scarf she knitted for my birthday:

Such softness!  And lovely Fall-like colors.  I think I'll take this along on vacation in case we have a chilly morning or night (I'm sure we will).  I'd best remember to pack some fingerless mitts too.

I have been able to knit a little bit at lunch the past couple of days so there has been some progress on the second sock:

I should be able to finish up the leg, do the heel flap, turn the heel (one of my favorite parts - always like magic!!), pick up the gusset stitches and head down the foot before we leave on Sunday.  There are some errands I need to run tomorrow (groceries for the trip), and cleaning before we leave, as well as packing.  And - most important - I need to decide what other knitting project(s) (and maybe some stitching??) to take on vacation.

Meanwhile, I smell bacon & eggs - the caterers just set up breakfast in our main kitchen at work.  I'm headed over there now.  Then a conference call at 10 and hopefully out of here by mid-afternoon.

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend and a great week ahead.  I'll be back here on the 9th or 10th.  Be well!

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Unraveled Wednesday 9-25-19

Good Morning All,

A little bit of a nip in the air this morning as I left my house.  The sun had just risen and the fields I passed looked all misty and foggy.  Definitely a Fall look (and feel) this morning.

Yesterday ended up being busy!  I had an eye doctor appointment early which went very well (YAY!!) and then ran into road construction on my way to work.  I needed (ha!) to stop at Trader Joe's on my way into the office and eventually got in a little after 10.  After that the day sort of got away from me.  I had a meeting at 12:30 that I had completely forgotten about and I wanted to leave a little early as yesterday was Fletcher's birthday. 

Bottom line, not much knitting was accomplished.  I only managed to knit four rows on the 2nd Cascading Leaves sock.

The pattern is just beginning to emerge...hopefully I will get some rows knit at lunch today.  I had hoped to finish this before we leave on vacation this Sunday, but I know that won't happen.  So this will go with me along with another project or two.  Perhaps I can finish it before one of the days we have planned for hiking!

On the reading front, I am still making my way through "Before We Were Yours."  I haven't read anything for a couple of days (too busy or too tired).  I had two books come through at the library (*real* books as opposed to Overdrive) but I turned them back in since we will be on vacation and they would be due before we return.  I'm anxious to read them both (Inland and Lanny). so will put requests in again once we are back home.

This is another busy day at work.  After months of basically nothing to do, we have entered the time of year where everything gets crazy.  Our fiscal year runs October-September, so closing out one year and starting another is always nuts.  Add in another meeting this afternoon and my day is pretty packed.  I'd best get a move on.

Linking up with Kat on this Unraveled Wednesday.  Head on over to her blog to see what others are making and reading.

Monday, September 23, 2019

A HO...or One Finished and the Next Started

Good Morning Friends!

Let me tell you, it was SO wonderful to have the gift of Friday off.  I managed to get up (ha!), get 3 loads of laundry finished, pay the bills that were due, run some errands AND knit!  Getting all of that stuff done also allowed me to have a fun day with Dee on Saturday.  Saturday was an absolutely beautiful day to be out and about and we went to a great craft show, walked around Skippack a bit, had a wonderful lunch and then went to a coffee shop for some knitting time.  Perfection!

On Sunday I finished the first of the Cascading Leaves socks in the beautiful Make Do yarn.  Love it!  And # 2 has been started (cuff ribbing complete).

This guy kept me company while I knit.

Minutes before I snapped that picture he had his right paw covering his eyes - too cute.

Fletch and I ran some errands yesterday and when we got home, Tyg was by the water feature.  Next thing I knew, he had a frog under his paw!  I yelled and the frog got away.  Tyg was not amused, but this guy is safe, at least for a little bit longer.

Today should be a nice day.  We have an employee lunch off site (Bahama Breeze).  Since we had Friday off, I doubt that Bobby will tell us to just go home after lunch, but you never know! 

How was your weekend?

Thursday, September 19, 2019

A Thursday That is Like a Friday!

Good Morning!

Well, a chilly start to the day - it was in the 40's on my drive into work today and I (gasp!!) put the heat on in the car!  It is so sunny and just lovely out.

Yesterday I received an e-mail mid-day letting us know that our office will be closed tomorrow as a thank you for a strong end to our fiscal year!  Isn't that just the best?  Bobby (CEO) told me it was just so beautiful driving in yesterday that he thought we should all have a long weekend for the last one of summer. 

And the weekend promises to be JUST like summer - temps are forecast to be in the upper 80's with plenty of sun.  Dee and I are going to meet up at a craft fair that is being held at Pennypacker Mills which (hopefully) will be fun.  I don't think I've ever been there, so am looking forward to seeing the place.  I'm sure there will be coffee and knitting too😊

Usually I don't participate in Three on Thursday, but yesterday when I got home, Fletch and I were sitting on the patio with our beverages and I looked out at the garden and saw three things to share with you!

1.  Not the best picture (it was sunny and shadowy), but this is the Fall planting of sugar snap peas beginning to climb the trellis.  Fletch thinks they will start blooming by the time we return from vacation.  YAY  (The mess behind the trellis is the volunteer raised bed box with tomato plants, cantaloupe vines, etc.)

2.  This is the Fall planting of spinach and lettuce (a big mix of things).  Fletch has built a cold frame cover for this raised bed box.  In past years we've been able to pick greens at Christmas!

3.  🍅Tomatoes.  Still.  I picked the bowl on the left yesterday.  The bowl on the right was picked two days prior (and had more in it, but we've consumed a bunch).  These are so sweet and so tasty and they just keep on coming!  Our large tomatoes have been slow to develop and slow to ripen, but when they do they sure are good!  I'm also planning to use a few for Fried Green Tomatoes.

Linking up with Carole and others for Three on Thursday (or Friday in my case!).  Bring on the weekend!!

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Unraveled Wednesday 09/18/19

Good Morning!

It is a gorgeous morning here in Eastern PA.  The temp was only 55 on my way into work this a.m. and it felt so nice.  My car was covered with dew and luckily I noticed a Praying Mantis on my windshield before I turned my wipers on.  I moved him onto a plant at the edge of our driveway where I think he'll be happier.

I've made some progress on my Cascading Leaves sock (the first one).  The heel flap is finished and I am ready to turn the heel.

Once again it has come to work with me and perhaps I'll be able to complete the heel today.  So far this week, I have not knit at lunch...but hopefully today.  I can't say enough good things about this Make Do Yarn dyed by Vicki - it is SO nice to knit with...soft and squishy.  Love it!

On the reading front, I started Before We Were Yours and am about 50 pages into it.  So far it is ok - I feel about it like I did about Where the Crawdads Sing.  It's good, but not great writing by any means.  But, it is holding my attention which is more than I can say for some of my recent reads.  Fletch and I are continuing to enjoy reading Tom Sawyer after dinner.  And, we are continuing to laugh out loud as we read it.  Fun!

I've been getting into the Fall baking/cooking mode recently.  I made a batch of Toffee Pecan cookies on Monday and tonight I'm hoping to make either a pie, tart or cobbler with some of the last of the garden rhubarb along with blackberries and raspberries.  Not that I need any of these sweet treats mind you, but I enjoy making them. 

Linking up with Kat and friends on this Unraveled Wednesday.  Head on over to see what others are making and reading.

Monday, September 16, 2019


Well Hello There,

I'm having a bit of a late start this a.m. thanks to being in the dental chair at 7:30 this morning!  Not my favorite way to start the week...but, as it turns out, I had broken off a couple of pieces (small) of one of my molars.  No pain (thank God), but wanted to get it taken care of ASAP.  Dr. George patched me all up...but if it happens again, I'll be gaining another crown.  Aging teeth...what can I say?

Saturday was chock full of activity.  First of all, look who showed up for breakfast:

He (she?) was just the cutest...but her back side was filthy and I heard (from our vet) that a number of deer died last year/earlier this year from some disease with major diarrhea.  Poor thing.  He/she did manage to get some food:

I'm surprised I got this shot as the apple kept dropping down (too big for the mouth I suppose.  This fawn hung around for the longest time.  Walked right up to the edge of our patio and looked at me and didn't mind Tyg going in and out of the house.

Then it was time to take Tyg for his annual visit to the vet for vaccinations and a well check.  He managed to gain a bit of weight over the past year (just like me!) and he now weighs 12 lbs, 4 oz.  And ALL muscle (which is definitely NOT like me - lol).  His lips were swollen again - they get that way every summer.  It's some kind of reaction to heat or an allergy of some sort.  Once again he is now on steroids to bring that swelling down.  No signs of any ticks or fleas despite the vet not approving of the "natural" remedy we use on Tyg (basically peppermint oil).  Because he goes out we want to keep him protected, but I don't like the idea of all the chemicals in some treatments.

Anyway, Tyg couldn't wait to get out of there.  He went outside once we were home and ended up being out all day because Fletch and I were gone.  Luckily he is never much impacted by the vaccinations...and if he gets too drowsy, there are plenty of places for him to take a nap outside.

Fletch and I headed over to Colin & Mailing's around 10:30 or so.  The weather was kind of iffy, so we ended up driving from their place to the Farmer's Market.  We walked around and then went to lunch at Round Guys where I had an excellent brew (Russian Messenger with "hints of  chocolate, molasses and bourbon").  Fletch and I had lunch; Colin & Mailing just had some beer as they had gone out to breakfast with friends and were still stuffed.

After that we headed to Shofuso a Japanese style garden inside Fairmount Park.  This is where Colin & Mailing had some engagement photos taken.  Wow!  What an amazing place.  Very small, but packed with beauty.  Here are a few pics:

Click to enlarge.  There were many large koi fish in the water

There was also a statue in an alcove of bamboo where many folks had left coins.

There is also a Japanese style house on the grounds that you can go in.  We were able to walk through most of it, but I did not take pictures as there was a class going on and they had requested no photographs.  The whole place was just amazingly peaceful and gorgeous.  Even on an overcast day!  I'd like to go back and see it in the Fall and also in the Winter.

We headed back to Colin & Mailing's to relax a bit (everyone napped except me!  I knit!) and then have dinner.  Colin was grilling kielbasa (that he had picked up at the Farmer's Market) and from their CSA share we had roasted butternut squash, steamed green & wax beans and sauteed collards.  There was also a delicious dense loaf of whole wheat bread from the Farmer's Market...and a nice bottle of wine.

When Colin headed out to grill he saw this guy on his fence:

Fletch is pretty sure it is a juvenile Red Tail Hawk.  He (she?) stayed on the fence for at least 10 minutes - even with Colin going in and out of the house.  Amazing to see it so close.  My picture was taken through their sun room window.  The wooden fence is theirs; the metal fence beyond is their neighbor's.  Colin texted me Sunday that he was outside doing yard work and heard the hawk cry in the woods and then take off right behind their house.

We didn't stay long after dinner as Colin & Mailing had plans to go out.  But what a fun day we had!

Sunday had a few chores (minimal laundry, grocery shopping) and I made a "vegetarian sloppy Joe" mixture for dinner that turned out to be very good!  We watched the first episode of Ken Burns' "Country Music" which was very good.  (But...I'm not sure I can handle watching 2 hours of it 4 nights in a row...and then again next week for 4 more nights!)

So, how was your weekend?

Friday, September 13, 2019

Friday the 13th

Good Morning!

Happy Friday the 13th!  And...a full moon later tonight.  A double whammy!

It poured on my way home yesterday.  I was driving through Valley Forge Park and suddenly the wind whipped up and then the rain started.  It was so strong that I had difficulty seeing with my wipers on the fastest setting!  By the time I arrived home it had just about stopped.  Colin was over for dinner and we ended up having a fire!

It looks pretty dark, but actually the sky looked like this:

It was around 7:30 when I snapped the pics.  Colin hung around till about 9 and it was nice just to relax by the fire.

Tomorrow I take Tyg to the vet in the morning for his annual well check - lol.  Believe it or not, that is what they write on the bill.  He will get all his shots and hopefully be pronounced in good health.  After that Fletch and I are spending the day with Colin and Mailing - going to the farmers market, out to lunch and then down to Shofuso - a Japanese Garden in Philly.  They were there a few weeks ago for engagement photos and thought it would be a fun place to take us. After that we are heading back to their place for dinner.  A full day, but it should be fun.  Sunday will be my day for getting chores done and (hopefully) relaxing some.

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend!!

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Unraveled Wednesday 09-11-19

Good Morning All!

A sort of grey, somber day which is fitting for 9/11.  Hard to believe it's been 18 years!

Yesterday was a busy day and my birthday!  Fletch grilled delicious steaks for us and I steamed some tiny (marble sized) potatoes from the garden and roasted a bunch of cherry tomatoes.  It all tasted so good.  And, a nice bottle of Cabernet to go with it all (compliments of my boss Bill).

If you read my blog on Monday, you saw a bit of green yarn in one of the photos.  That, my friends, has been ripped out.  I was trying (twice) to knit a pattern for some new socks for me and just was not enjoying it.  Why continue?  The yarn has been put away for a bit and some new, gorgeous yarn has come out.  Some time ago I ordered a skein of Make Do yarn from Vicki and I finally wound it on Sunday and cast on for Cascading Leaves - free on Ravelry.  Friends, this yarn is lovely!!

The color is "Orange Crush" but since we are now in full FALL mode, I am calling it light pumpkin or light maple leaf.  It is soft and squishy and just oh so nice to knit with - a dream.  Thank you Vicki!!  And, since we are in full FALL mode, my stitch marker/progress keeper is an acorn!

I've gotten through 3 pattern repeats (8 rows each) and it is moving along nicely.

On the reading front, I'm about half way through The Stone Circle the latest in the Ruth Galloway mystery series by Elly Griffiths.  This is an enjoyable series - easy to read and I've always been interested in archaeology, so these appeal to me.  In my opinion the Inspector Gamache books by Louise Penny are better, but these are fun.  Fletch and I decided to read "Tom Sawyer" together after dinner and we are getting such a kick out of it.  I can't remember how old I was when I read this book, but it was decades ago.  This is such a fun book to read out loud and we are both really enjoying it.

Head on over to Kat's blog to see what others are making and reading!

Monday, September 9, 2019

Weekend recap

Hello All,

What a great weekend!  The weather was simply perfect for a fiber festival.  If you've read Dee's Blog you know that we headed across the river to NJ on Saturday for the NJ Sheep & Fiber Festival.  There were sheep:

Love these black faced sheep.  And look at the spotted one in the back!  Then there were those in coats:

LOL - Already groomed and ready to show - no chance of rolling in muck for this one.

Attendance at the Festival was good.  We did run into Bridget and The Tim and we saw Kristy Glass - though she did not see us and I'm not sure why she didn't seek us out for an interview - lol.  I was wearing hand knit socks.....It seemed a bit more crowded to me this year, but also fewer vendors.  Nevertheless, I managed to add to the stash:

I forget the name of the color on the left, but the one on the right is called Barn Owl.  Both are just so pretty.  And then I managed to get into a bit of a bag frenzy....

This one is heavy - made out of woven jute and will be perfect to house a BIG sweater project or a blanket project.  And then there was also this one...

I'm a sucker for gorgeous upholstery fabric.  This bag is perfect for a project or two while traveling.

Dee and I eventually left and drove into Lambertville to grab some lunch.  Walking through town we spotted this:

Not sure who is responsible for this as there are no local yarn shops.  We had a delicious lunch at Full Moon and then made our way to a coffee shop

(yes, that's a cookie on the table...and some yarn).  The green yarn has since been frogged and is in time out for an indefinite period of time.....

There were some guardians at the coffee shop watching us:

These were up high on a ledge near the ceiling.  Very cool.

All in all, a wonderful day.  Now it's back to work.  This week promises to be busy.  Wishing you all a wonderful week ahead.

Friday, September 6, 2019

TGIF - Felines and a Finish!!


The short work week is almost over!  We are having a catered lunch today at work to celebrate the beginning of football season.  You all know that I am not a sports fan AT ALL - LOL.  However, I will enjoy a free lunch!

Yesterday's lunch saw a finish of the Watermelon Socks!

They are not the identical twins I once thought they might be, but happy fraternal twins will work.  I think my friend Leslie will love these.  Hopefully they will hold up well (cotton and poly).  They were fun to knit and there is more than enough yarn left to add to a scrappy blanket (if I ever get back to knitting on that - ha!).  Perhaps I should have made these a bit longer...

Last Saturday when we were over at Colin's I managed to get some shots of the kitters.

The cats love the bay window with a sill large enough to accommodate their bed!  Talbot's favorite place (along with his cat tree in the sun room).  Here's a close up of Talbot - he always seems to look angry or sad, but he's not, it's just the way he looks.

And Marcel, the goofball:

They both are so much happier in this house than they were in any of the apartments that Colin & Mailing have lived in.

What are your weekend plans?  I am meeting up with Dee and we are heading over to the NJ Sheep and Fiber Festival tomorrow morning.  I can't wait!!  It's not like I need yarn or another project bag, or week is my birthday, so I'm thinking a little gift for myself is in order.  I'm sure I'll find something.  And the weather forecast looks perfect - sunny and temps in the upper 70's.

Whatever your plans, I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Unraveled Wednesday - September 4, 2019

Good Morning!

Today is promising to be on the hot and humid side.  It's a bit overcast which is helping to keep the temps down at the moment.

I only managed to get 5 more rows finished on the 2nd Watermelon Sock, so no picture.  No unraveling of yarn either which is good.

My brain, however, appears to have unraveled.  Late last night I realized my driver's license expires next week and I failed to send in the renewal paperwork.  Oy!  Today I'm going to one of the places for renewal with all my "Real ID" documents and am hoping that will work and I can avoid driving with an expired license.  Fletcher's expires in 3 weeks, so his paperwork is going out in the snail mail to Harrisburg today.  I'm not sure how I missed sending these in except that they were sitting on the kitchen table as opposed to being in the "to be paid" folder I keep.

Yesterday did see the finish of two books!  First, Fletch and I finished reading another book by Jules Verne - Around the World in 80 Days - a fun and very short book.  20,000 Leagues is still my favorite Jules Verne book, but this one was very enjoyable.  And on my Kindle I finished Next Year in Havana - a chick-lit type book with Cuban history at the time Castro took over up to present day.  It was a pleasant diversion.

Well, time to get some work done so I can get over to the license center before it becomes mobbed.  Linking up with Kat and friends.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Tuesday That Feels Like Monday


Ah the traffic this morning - a ten fold increase (at least) and school buses on the road.  And early morning darkness!  Geeze, I could have crawled right back into bed so easily.

But, what  a nice weekend we had.  It started early Friday with a Noon departure from work (I will miss those summer Fridays for sure).  I did manage to get a few chores out of the way before relaxing on the patio with Fletch and a beverage.  Dinner was simple - we ordered out steak sandwiches from the place down the road.  Easy Peasy and delicious.

Saturday I went out first thing and bought my kitchen curtains!!  Woo-Hoo!  Thanks to Dee and her suggestion to check Bed, Bath & Beyond.  All I wanted were simple white cafe curtains.  Bingo!  BBB carried them in the store.  Plus I had so many coupons for BBB I got them at a steal.

Saturday afternoon Fletch and I went over to Colin's (Mailing was away for the weekend).  We took our archery stuff - target, bows, arrows.  Fletch shot first and almost got a bulls eye with his first arrow.  After that it went downhill, or rather into the woods.  Half of our arrows went over the target and into the woods and have not been found.  Needless to say, we did not continue playing.  But, we did have a great dinner of marinated skirt steak which Colin grilled along with steamed garden potatoes, cucumber salad and marinated daikon radishes.  Yum. 

Colin had picked up their CSA share on Friday and gave us a few quarts of green beans, two butternut squash and some ground cherries which I had never had:

They are really tasty!  They are not sold in the stores around here.  Have any of you had them?  They have an outer husk similar to a tomatillo, but are much smaller - about the size of a nice blueberry.

Sunday I caught Steve munching on fallen apples:

Our resident groundhog.  We have called him (and all descendants) Steve the Beav ever since Colin was a toddler and thought that Steve was a beaver - lol.

The weather all weekend...up to this point...was gorgeous.  Monday dawned grey.  And then it got darker.  Honestly, at 9:30 it looked like night-time.  We had some heavy rain and a bit of thunder, but it didn't last as long as I thought it might.  We ended up having a Southern inspired meal for dinner:  a ham steak fried up, kale cooked with bacon and corn muffins with left over corn and peppers from the garden in them.

So good!

The 2nd Watermelon Sock was not finished as I had hoped, but the heel has been turned and I am on the foot.  It won't be long now.

All in all, it was just a wonderful, relaxing weekend filled with good food, family, relaxing, etc.  Hoping you all had a wonderful long weekend was well.