Monday, December 28, 2020



Well, That was a lengthy break...and I think I needed it.  I may still need it - lol.  Last night I went to bed...woke up at 1:45 (heard the clock chime, so I know what time it was) and never got back to sleep!  I'm feeling a bit fuzzy.  However, the sunrise today was simply spectacular!

It did not last long at all - maybe a couple of minutes and then it was gone.  Then it turned grey and ugly looking and there was a bit of snow and rain.  But, eventually the sun came out and it is a pretty afternoon.  If I only had more energy I'd go for a walk or do a little archery...but today I am lazy.

So how was your holiday?  Ours was so nice.  We are fortunate to be able to spend time with Colin & Mailing and also Mailing's parents and sister.  We see them regularly, so are comfortable getting together with them.

Christmas Eve found us at Colin & Mailing's for dinner and opening "stocking stuffers."  Dinner was amazing.  Colin made crab cakes (98% crab meat and 2% filler - saltines and spices).  Mailing made some of the best potatoes I've had in a long time.  And there were green beans with almonds to go with...and Mailing made a Black Forest Cake.  Oh my!

Talbot sported a pretty ribbon around his neck:

Marcel sulked because of the attention Talbot was getting!  He (Marcel) stayed under a chair for some time.  LOL

Dusty floor and furniture tag hanging down - hahaha.

And then the rains started.  Holy crap!  what a lot of rain.  And the winds were fierce.  We drove home in it and found a little bit of water in our basement.  C&M ended up with 4" or so in their basement.

Fletch and I hung out a bit at home Christmas morning and then headed over to Mailing's parents house.  We had brunch (amazing) and then opened gifts (too many).  After that everyone except the Dad's headed out to Valley Forge Park for a walk.  Christmas Eve saw temps in the 60's, but by Christmas afternoon it was in the 20's and the wind was still roaring.  We walked about 10 minutes  - that was it!  My face felt like it was frozen stiff.  We drove back home, played several games of Deception which was fun - like Clue, but different.  Then Bonnie (Mailing's Mom) got started with dinner.  We made dumplings (of course) and then there was just a ton of food.  Shrimp, veggies, pickles, calamari, beef, pork ribs, and on and on and on!

Fletch and I waddled out of there and were home a little after 9 p.m.  I say this every time we all get together, but we are so fortunate to enjoy each other's company.  I know not everyone enjoys their children's in-laws, but we do!!

Our weekend was relaxing.  I've done a little knitting and a bit of cooking and I've been reading.  There is a work project that I need to get started on, but so far today I've pretty much ignored work.  I think tomorrow I've got to dig in (hopefully after a bit of sleep!!).

I've enjoyed being off the computer.  I've read a couple of blogs on my phone, but mostly I've been off line which my eyes have enjoyed.

I hope everyone has had a wonderful holiday.  Not sure when I will check in again, so for now I will say Happy New Year!  Cheers to 2021 - I'm hopeful for the new year.

Monday, December 21, 2020


 Well Hello!

Snow is still on the ground,  but the temps are warming up and I think by Wednesday it will be in the 50's.  Fletch did see/hear that we have a good chance of snow on Christmas Day.  Mailing's parents are hoping we can all go for a walk in Valley Forge on Christmas Day...we shall see.  I would love a walk in a snow storm!

Our tree is up and fully lighted now and we have decided to leave it that way - no ornaments this year.  I am missing seeing some of my favorites, but I am also really enjoying the simplicity of it and being lazy - lol.  It will also make the post holiday clean up that much easier!

Fletch was able to find a nice thin one that is perfect for the small space we have in the living room.  The tree is pretty fragrent and I love coming down in the morning and catching the scent of it.  Tyg has been sleeping under it occasionally!

We did put a wreath on the front door.  Years and years ago (like probably 35+) Fletcher's Mom gave us a pinecone wreath that she had made.  I will try to get a picture of it to share.  Right now it is just around 6 a.m. and still very dark.  And I put a few of our favorite things out on the buffet.  The jewel tree that Fletcher's Mom also made for us, the birch log we found on a hike years ago and then Fletch drilled holes for candles in it.

A bit of fresh holly and a little Santa in a canoe.  I love the snowflake runner too.

I managed to finish up the little kitty socks for Mailing yesterday afternoon.

The grey at the cuffs and heels is sparkly and wow!  what a PITA that was to work well as the black yarn on size 1 needles.  Intarsia in the round is not (for me) an easy thing - a bit fiddly.  BUT, I do like the way they turned out and I hope Mailing likes them too.  I decided to not put the whiskers on these.  I like them just plain.

You all were so encouraging about going to the yarn shop that is I had to do that!  I drove over Saturday afternoon and my timing was good as there was only one other person shopping then.  The owner is retiring for a couple of reasons:  1) she has family moving back from CA and she wants to spend more time with them and 2) her "right hand assistant" for the past 10 years recently took a job in her chosen field of social work and is no longer helping/working at the shop.  She was thinking of closing by 12/31, but told me she may stay open into the first or second week in January because there is still so much yarn in the shop.  I found it to be pretty much picked over, but managed to find two skeins and everything was 45% off!

I've never knit with Berroco Sox before, but it is 75/25 and 100 grams (440 yards).  The Manos Del Uruguay Alegria I have used previously.  It is also 75/25 and 100 grams (445 yards).  I may use that yarn for a shawl.  Not sure yet.  But the two skeins set me back a whopping $21.00.  Not bad!  All books were $5, but I didn't see anything worth getting.  There was still a bit of Kidsilk Haze by Rowan, but the other Rowan yarns seemed to be gone.  I may or may not go back before New Year's and see if the discount has been increased.  There was some MadTosh sock yarn and a few other brands, but as I mentioned, pretty well picked over.

Today I'm heading back to the office.  Turns out I have two more packages to ship out via UPS for Christmas!  I also have a bunch of stuff I want to print in color, some things to print for Kevin and then overnight to him, and Bruce will be in the office and I need to meet with him.  I only plan to be there a couple of hours, but we shall see.

I'll probably not be on the computer much for the next week or so (or I may be!!).  There is wrapping that needs to be started (and finished) and some other things to do.  So, if I'm not on line much let me take this opportunity to wish you all a wonderful holiday.  And...Happy Winter Solstice - we are hoping to be able to see the conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter tonight (last night was too overcast).

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Unraveled Wednesday 12/16/20

 Well Good Morning!

I'm off to a later than normal start today - I slept until 7:30!!!  I was up around 5 a.m. with Tyg who wanted to go out (after letting me watch him eat a little bit - lol) and I wasn't sure I would get back to sleep, but the next thing I knew it was 7:30.  So, I'm a bit groggy still only having had about 1/4 cup of coffee so far.  It's a chilly morn here (23) and our snow should start in a little bit...and go on all the rest of the day and night.

More baking was accomplished yesterday.  another batch of those yummy pecans and also a batch of the roasted almonds tossed with EVOO, rosemary and garlic.  And I made another batch of cookies.  These are the Italian Sesame Seed cookies flavored with anise (the Chinese version of sesame cookies is very similar but flavored with almond extract).  They really are just like a butter cookie rolled in sesame cookies.  They are good, but the anise flavor is not strong enough for moi - next time I would add more (unless with flavor increases as they sit a day or two).

I have butter out to soften so that today I can make a batch of molasses cookies and a batch of sand tarts (cut out).    The sand tarts take a bit of time - rolling out the dough, cutting it out and decorating them, but they are some of my favorite cookies.  I think once those two batches are baked, that will be enough of a variety to share with everyone.

Yesterday saw me finish the heel flap and turn the heel on the first YinYang Kitty Sock for Mailing.

I'm using left over scraps of yarn.  These will be (obviously) shortie socks which Mailing prefers.  Hopefully that means I can get both finished by Christmas.  It's been a little bit of time since I did any Intarsia knitting, so I'm betting that will slow me down a little bit.

Not a whole lot going on reading-wise.  Fletch and I started a new book  a day or two ago about a couple who go to Africa in the 70s to conduct some research.  So far it is holding our attention.  I have a pile of books on my nightstand from the library.

Fletch was able to get more lights yesterday (Target!!) - some more for outside and the other half for the top of our tree.  Now we just need to get the ornaments up from the basement and decorate it!  I'm a lot more relaxed about this than I was years and years ago.  No need to do it ALL at once!  LOL

If you read Dee's Blog you know that Yarnings, a local yarn shop in Skippack is closing.  As I told Dee, it's definitely not my favorite store by a long shot, but I am sorry to hear that they are closing. of right now everything is 45% off!  I don't know when their last day is and I'm not sure how long there will be decent stock, but I "may need" to get over there on Saturday!  In addition to all the sock yarns I love, they usually have had a very good selection of yarn from Rowan.  I certainly don't NEED anything, but that has not stopped me in the past.  

As usual, linking up with Kat for Unraveled Wednesday.  Be sure to check out her blog to see what she and others are making and reading.  There is ALWAYS inspiration!

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Tuesday...TNT...But No TNT to Show

 Hello and Good Morning!

It's Tiny Needle Tuesday, or TNT, but I've got nothing to show you.  That's right, I did absolutely no stitching in the last week.  And hardly any knitting!  I did start a kitty sock for Mailing, but it's not worth showing.  Instead, I've got this to show:

This is what I made yesterday afternoon - Spiced Pecans.  Oh my!  I need/want to get another bag of pecans and make more.  Pecans are not cheap.  The recipe is so simple:

Bring a pot of water to a boil.  Drop in 12 oz of pecans.  When the water comes to a boil again, take off heat and drain the pecans.  Shake off as much water as you can.  Blanching them this way eliminates some of the tannins found in pecan's skins that can be a tad bitter.

Throw the pecans in a bowl where you have combined:

  • 1/3 C sugar
  • 1.5 TBS cinnamon
  • 1 TBS ground ginger
  • 1.5 tsp dry mustard
  • .5 tsp ground cardamom
  • .5 tsp cayenne pepper
  • .5 tsp cloves

Mix them all around till coated.  Spread on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and bake at 300 for about 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Cool on a rack and then package in an air tight container (I used canning jars).  Delicious!

Next time I would cut back on the cinnamon and maybe increase the cayenne and/or cloves.

I have a recipe for almonds that I got from a steakhouse in FL.  Basically you roast some raw almonds and then toss them in EVOO with fresh rosemary and a bunch of garlic.  Oh my!  These are also really good.  I may need to pick up some raw almonds in addition to the pecans.

Meanwhile, there are some more cookies I'd like to make.  And I found a recipe for an apple nut torte that I made about 30 years ago that is wonderful (especially served with whipped cream flavored with cinnamon).

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'd better start some kind of exercise program or walking again or something.  If I'm not careful I'll be 500 lbs before the new year!

We are hunkering down for the forecast storm.  They are now saying we should get about a foot of snow Wednesday into Thursday.  We had very wet snow yesterday afternoon that was quite heavy.  I'm hoping the snow tomorrow will be lighter.  It should be because it will be quite a bit colder.  The snowblower is ready and we have plenty of food on hand.  There is knitting, stitching and plenty of reading to keep me occupied (plus, I will be working).

Time to pour another cup of coffee.  I'll try to do a better job and have a TNT update for you next week.

Monday, December 14, 2020

Monday Again

 Good Morning!

It's raining here...and is supposed to rain ALL day.  Come Wed-Thurs though we are supposed to receive 5-8" of the white stuff!  That should make it all look festive.  We've stocked up on suet, peanuts and sunflower seeds so our birds will be happy.

I will say the weekend seemed to fly by.  I don't feel as though I did all that much, yet here we are at Monday morning again.  I'm at the office (and I'm the only one here...I think Bill is coming in, not sure about Bruce).  I've a conference call at 10 and before then I have a ton of stuff that needs to be printed in color and/or on ledger paper (neither of which I can do at home).  I brought in the last package I have to ship for the holidays and will take care of that.  I'm hoping to get out of here by Noon, but we shall see.

Saturday I stayed home and did laundry and a little bit of cleaning.  Fletch went out early to the farm stand and got a perfect Christmas tree for us.  Yesterday we got that inside and it is settling a bit before Fletch gets the lights on it.  We will decorate it later this week.  I did manage to get two batches of cookies made yesterday.

Oatmeal raisin on the left (Fletcher's favorite) and espresso chip (!! - YUM) on the right.  A few more batches to make.  Fletch will drop some off for the couple he still works for occasionally and we'll need to drop some off for Colin & Mailing.  Lord knows that we do not need ALL the cookies staying at our house...or in our bellies!!  LOL

That book in the upper left corner of the picture (A Spool of Blue Thread by Ann Tyler) was dropped off at the library on my way into work this morning.  I gave up on it.  Just found it more annoying than interesting.

The kayaks we ordered for Colin & Mailing back in August were FINALLY delivered to them last Thursday!  Fletch dropped by their place on Friday and took a quick peek at them.  Colin had moved them into the basement and Marcel is ready to go kayaking!!  LOL

I'm not sure how Talbot feels about them.

Time for me to get to work.  Hope everyone has a great week!

Friday, December 11, 2020

Friday Brings a Finish!

 Good Morning!

It's 25 degrees out there.  31 years ago there was snow on the ground.  I remember because it was 31 years ago that I was in Bryn Mawr Hospital.  Colin was born just after midnight on 12/11/89.  Funny story:  my due date was 12/7 (Pearl Harbor Day), and my friend Leslie said oh will have your baby on 12/11.  Exactly 12 years prior Leslie was pregnant with a due date of 12/7.  Her daughter, Jaimie, was born on 12/11.  Our family has so many birthdays on 12/11:  Colin, my niece Vera in CO, my brother's partner Sammy, Fletcher's Grandfather.  A popular day!

Meanwhile, this Friday brings with it a finish:

I do love the way these turned out and I think Anna will like them too.  The mitts knit up so quickly, I almost wish there were some other people to knit mitts for!  LOL  Instead, I plan to cast on the YinYang Kitty socks for Mailing today.

My usual 10 a.m. conference call is still on for today, but other than that there is nothing (at the moment) on my work agenda.  Fletch says he has some errands to run, so I may try to wrap some of his gifts while he is out of the way.  And maybe some other gifts too.  I'd also like to get the bathrooms cleaned and I have been ignoring the kitchen floor, but it is time to tackle that.  

We plan to have a fire tonight as it is supposed to be fairly mild today and our winds have died down.  Fletch is going to get our tree this weekend, so I guess there will be some decorating going on as well.  And, of course, I'd like to get some baking (cookies) done.

Let's not forget to relax!  I'd like to have a relaxing weekend and I hope you all do as well.

Thursday, December 10, 2020

A Thursday Jumble of Things

 Hi and Good Morning!

Last night was another one where I was awake more than asleep.  Hopefully there will be a nap later on.  But first I have a doctor's appointment at 8:40 and a rash of reports to get out.  So...a busy morning.

Yesterday saw our first snow of the season!  So pretty.  It started a little before Noon and lasted for a couple of hours.  No accumulation, but it did stick to tree branches.  Hopefully the very short video below will let you see what it was like.

When Colin & Mailing were over on Sunday, he mentioned seeing an abandoned bird's nest in one of our burning bushes.  Yesterday when I walked down the driveway to get the mail I saw it.

Do you see it?  At the center near the bottom.  There is also the beginning of another one above it and a little to the left.

Finally, I only rarely go on IG, but the other day when I opened it up this appeared!

Of course I LOVE it!  I need to save the image - perhaps for stitching or something.

And that's it for me this morning.  I've got to try to knock out at least one report before I get ready to head to the doctor appointment.  Have a great day!

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Unraveled Wednesday 12/9/20

 Good Morning!

It's mid-week and so far all is good!  My office day (really just morning) yesterday was productive and the afternoon was pretty easy.  Fletch and I ran out and among other things managed to get a new de-icer for the "bird bath" (really just a giant saucer to go under a plant) that we keep on our picnic table.  The birds love it year round, but the de-icer we had last year gave out at the end of winter.  Now we will be good to go and it's been needed as the temps drop into the 20's each night.

I'm plugging along on my Christmas knitting.  The headband for Anna is finished (I LOVE it) and the first fingerless mitt to match has been started.

The mitts knit up quickly (I can't seem to find a link to the pattern) - just a simple 2x2 rib at the cuff, then plain knitting, a little itty bitty thumb and then a smaller amount of ribbing at the top.  The DK weight makes everything go a little bit faster.  The first mitt should easily (ha!!) be finished today and the second one started.  I've also picked out the yarn I want to use for the YinYang Kitty Socks for Mailing (she requested another pair).

I'm waiting on a few books from the library but in the interim am reading A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler.  This is not one of her better novels (my opinion) and I'm not reading it quickly - basically because I tend to get drowsy and nod off every time I pick it up!  The characters are typically quirky, but the book is just not really pulling me in.  I've read a little over 100 pages, so am a good (almost) third of the way through and will probably stick with it.

As always, linking up with Kat and the other Unravelers to talk about what we are making and reading.  Head on over to Kat's for some inspiration!

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Tiny Needle Tuesday 12/8/20

 Hello, Hello!

It is later than I usually post, but I got up early and drove in to my office this morning.  There are a few more people than usual in today, but everyone is (more than) social distancing and wearing masks.  It actually doesn't feel so creepy being here today.  I managed to print a bazillion things for Bill (who is also here doing some zoom calls), and got all my packages taped and UPS-labeled ready to go out today.  Also a couple of packages that Bill needed shipped out.

My drive in this morning was pleasant.  I had to take a little detour and not go through Valley Forge Park (there were some fire engines blocking the road I would go down to enter the Park...hopefully nothing too major).  So I wound my way past a horse farm and many of the horses were out in the fields already - all of them blanketed (it was right around 32 degrees).  Such a pretty scene.  If it wasn't such a narrow and winding road, I would have pulled over for a picture or two.

Meanwhile, it is Tiny Needle Tuesday and a little progress was made on the Quaker sampler I'm stitching:

The left border is now complete and the beginning of the bottom border is finished.  Still a VERY long way to go, but progress nonetheless.  There are, of course, plenty more animals and trees and leaves to be stitched along with the letters sprinkled throughout the sampler.  Luckily I am still having fun with it and enjoying the stitching.  I'm thinking I should be able to get a lot accomplished over the holidays as work will be quiet (fingers crossed) and we won't be going out anywhere (other than to Colin & Mailing's and to Mailing's parents on Christmas day).

Well, time to get back to work!  Hope your week is going well.

Monday, December 7, 2020


 Hello and Good (Chilly) Morning!

How was your weekend?  Did you have fun?  Make anything new?  Eat some good food?  I managed to do all those things (plus some of those mundane and pesky chores).

I started knitting one of those headbands that Kym posted about early last week.  This will be for Anna, Mailing's sister and I should have sufficient yarn to make matching fingerless mitts!

(Displayed on one of my Christmassy tablecloths - one that my Mom made and we used decades ago!!)

This is a quick knit and a fun one.  I had thought I would finish it yesterday, but I had made a false start on Friday and had to rip out all that I had knit.  (I needed to get the hang of the first stitch being a yarn over).  I re-started and chugged along.  I am almost finished it, but yesterday the kids were over and I was busy cooking and doing other things.

The yarn is DK weight and like my Aspen socks, it is from Less Traveled Yarn in their Creosote Collection.  The colorway is Prickly Pear.  The band is so squishy - I will definitely be making more of these!

Saturday brought unexpected laundry thanks to Tyg and a MASSIVE hairball right on the guestroom bed!  Geeze.  I have to strip off the comforter, blanket, sheets and wash everything.  It is rare for Tyg to do that (at least rare for him to do that inside...I don't know about outside).  What a mess!

As I mentioned, C&M came over for dinner on Sunday.  We celebrated their birthdays (Mailing's was 11/30 and Colin's is 12/11).  Fletch grilled a leg of lamb and we had tri-colored baby potatoes steamed and a green bean casserole (requested as Mailing had never tasted green bean casserole!!).  And I made a pecan pie.

So good (but so much sugar!!).

Sunday I managed to wrap gifts to be shipped AND got them boxed up and ready to ship.  I will send them out via UPS from my office - most likely tomorrow.  It feels good to have that finished.

And now here we are back at Monday.  Work has already been busy this morning, so I won't be able to do much knitting or fun things during the day...but we shall see.

Hope you all enjoyed the weekend and here's to a great week ahead!

Friday, December 4, 2020

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Unraveled Wednesday 12/2/20

 Good Morning!

The wind howled around yesterday and last night (and still a bit this morning).  Turns out that our storm on Monday brought a tornado (or two) to the area.  Fletch ran some errands yesterday and came across an area where trees had been snapped off and several were uprooted and leaning on houses!  The news flash across my phone confirmed that yes indeed, a tornado touched down.  So thankful we were spared any damage or direct hits.

Work was thankfully quiet yesterday and I was able to get some wrapping finished and gifts ready to be shipped out.  My goal is to have all gifts to be shipped wrapped and ready by next week when I go back into the office.  That way I can easily ship from UPS (and we get a discount which is nice!!).  Even though my office is closed, the UPS guy (Dave) shows up twice a day and picks up packages too (he does have a key to our office).

Now we are at Unraveled Wednesday - the first in December 2020.  As usual, I am linking up with Kat to talk about knitting.  I'm happy to say that my Aspen socks are finished.

This was Thanksgiving morning - socks laid out on the ironing board (I had just finished ironing the tablecloth for Thanksgiving dinner!).  These were knit in "Less Traveled Yarn" from their Creosote Collection.  The colourway is "Aspen."  The pattern is Brandi by Debbie Bliss.  These may be the first pair I knit using metal needles (size 1) and oh boy!  Give me my wooden DPNs please.  The metal needles were so slippery!  I felt like I was constantly battling having stitches slip off the needles.  I guess it boils down to what you are familiar with and accustomed to using.

Believe it or not, I have NOTHING on the needles at the moment!  I started to cast on something for a friend (I can't say anything more as she MAY read the blog), but realized I need to adjust the pattern.  I also want to knit another pair of Kitty Ankle Socks for Mailing (she has requested some).  Given that it is December 2nd, I'd best get cracking on both these projects.

I found a note from Fletch on the kitchen table this morning (he always is up much later than I am) saying that a town in OH received 22.5" of snow yesterday!!  And another place in western NC received 15"!  Hope everyone is safe and staying warm.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Tiny Needle Tuesday 12/1/20

 Hello and Good Morning!

It seems I took a bit of a break - lol.  I decided to stay off the computer for Thanksgiving and the weekend and I thoroughly enjoyed it!  I did end up turning it on Sunday afternoon to do work e-mail (I didn't want to be bombarded Monday morning).  And then yesterday I ended up trekking in to the office in the pouring rain (so much rain!).  Of course I ended up being busy.  And the weather!  It was warm yesterday - like 65!  And then thunderstorms in the afternoon.  Strange.

So I missed you all...missed reading your blogs (I'll confess to skimming one or two on my phone, but mostly I stayed away).  I did not miss being on the computer!  But now I'm back.

I hope everyone had a nice (though different) Thanksgiving.  Ours was delicious!  And just the two of us (first time ever!!).  We did see Colin & Mailing on Wednesday - had dinner at their place and then it was mild enough that we went outside for a fire.  Fletch and I also had a fire one night over the weekend - maybe Friday?  I can't remember exactly.

And now it is Tiny Needle Tuesday.  I'm happy to show you that the Owl, the Mouse and the cute little Hedgehog now have a companion - a squirrel!!  With a bushy tail!

I also started another border piece on the left.  Here's a view of the overall as it stands today:

The next border piece on the left (after I finish up the green) will be the corner piece that will turn and start going along the bottom.  There is still an awful lot of open space on this piece!  I will be busy for months!!

Today I hope to do a little knitting and stitching and also find time to catch up reading your blogs (all while working, of course).  Wish you all a wonderful Tuesday and a Happy December!

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Unraveled Wednesday 11/25/20

Good Morning!

It feels so nice to have not gotten up and checked work email first thing!  A little break is a most welcome thing.

Joining in with Kat for Unraveled things.  A small amount of progress was made on Aspen Sock #2.

It doesn't look like it in the photo, but I am roughly half way down the foot.  If I don't get too distracted, I may finish this one up today or tomorrow.  Time will tell.

I did soak the Antler Hat in Soak yesterday and what a bunch of red water I had!  And sheepy smelling wool.  LOL.  I couldn't find a mixing bowl (or any bowl) that was wide enough but also tall enough to pull the hat over, so instead I pinned it to one of my blocking pads and it is now drying (slowly) in the downstairs bathroom.  Guessing I will start another one shortly as my friend indicated last night when we talked that she would love one and then started singing Happy Birthday to herself (her birthday is in early January) - LOL

Today I mostly plan to do the little bit of cleaning that I successfully avoided yesterday.  There is no Thanksgiving cooking or prep work that HAS to be done today, and we are heading to Colin and Mailing's for dinner tonight.  My guess is that we will skip the outdoor fire (it is grey and could be raining by night time) and have a fire inside.  

However you are celebrating...or not...Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Tiny Needle Tuesday

 Good Morning!

Gosh I feel cold.  29 outside right now and I slept cold all night.  Time to put the winter comforter on the bed.

Not much stitching was accomplished this past week, but the owl finally has a full tree.

There is still an enormous amount to stitch on this sampler!  The sides will be longer and then, of course, the bottom border.  Plenty of critters still to occupy space and, as typical of Quaker samplers, letters in random order all over the sampler.  I was debating whether or not to stitch the letters, but I think I will.  They are all the same color, and I think I will do my initials in a different color.

As I mentioned yesterday, I started this book the other day.  I've now read roughly 75 pages or so and much of it is very I've already read it.  Funny as I don't recall all of it, but bits and pieces.  I have enough books from the library that I will most likely abandon this one in favor of another.  No more browsing in the library though - they have gone back to curb side pick up only at least through the end of January.  Probably best, but it sure was nice to wander the aisles all by myself the other week.

I'm hoping work will be quiet today (yesterday was).  Pretty much everyone is in Thanksgiving mode so it should not be crazy.  I have laundry and some cleaning I'd like to get done.  Colin & Mailing invited us for dinner tomorrow night since we are not spending Thanksgiving together.  Looking forward to that and need to find out if we can bring any food or wine.  I did buy a very pretty cyclamen for them at Trader Joe's yesterday.  My Grandmother used to grow the most beautiful cyclamen and gloxinia which reminds me I need to look for some of them.

Time to throw a quilt over the clothesline to air out and then pour another cup of coffee.  Enjoy the day!

Monday, November 23, 2020

A Finish!


It is grey here today - it looks like November.  But it is weirdly warm (like 53 with no sun out).  The wind is blowing and the trees are bare.

How was your weekend?  Mine was nice and easy going.  Friday I was able to finish the Antler Hat.  I knit the brim long enough that it can be folded up nicely.  I still have not washed and blocked it - perhaps today it will get a nice soak and then will fit over a mixing bowl or something.

Love the pattern!  And it's a free one from TinCan Knits.  The yarn is some that had been in my stash for ages:  Lamb's Pride Worsted (85% wool; 15% mohair) and the colorway is Bing Cherry.  My fingers and hands are thankful to have this project finished.  Worsted yarn and size 8 needles are hard on my hands.  But I love the finish and I've decided this will be a gift for Colin.  He walks a lot and this will be a nice, warm hat for him in the bleak mid winter!

Saturday Dee and I met up which was lovely as always.  We had some good Chatter Knitting and visited a yarn shop which was fun.  Sadly I did not find anything to come home with me.  They were fairly busy and were limiting the number of people in the store (a good thing) and I didn't want to take too much time wandering around.  As I said to Dee, "it's not like I NEED more yarn."  Dee kindly reminded me that NEED has nothing to do with it!  LOL  She is such a good friend!

That afternoon Fletch and I did some grocery shopping and were actually able to find a smallish (13 lbs) fresh turkey!  We had been planning to walk/hike in Valley Forge with Colin and Mailing on Sunday, but the grey skies moved in and it was a little raw outside.  We could feel the dampness coming in.  All four of us were lazy, so Col & Mailing stayed home and so did we.  I knit some and napped some and managed to finish The Patron Saint of Pregnant Girls by Ursula Hegi.  I'm sorry, but the book was just plain weird and never came together for me.  I kept thinking it would make sense, but it never really clicked with me.  A shame as I've enjoyed her other books so much.  Last night I started The Atomic Weight of Love and am enjoying it so far (40-50 pages into it).

In a little bit I will head to the office.  I have a few things I need to print in color.  I also want to stop at Trader Joe's and the pet store near the office - we are just about out of peanuts for the birds.  Knowing me, I'm sure I will stop at the State Store for some wine too!

Looking forward to a short week - only working today and tomorrow and have the balance of the week off.

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Thursday Stuff

 Good Morning!

Gosh it is cold (20 this a.m. when I got up and it doesn't look like the temp has risen any yet).  But, I've managed to get all my Thursday financial reports completed and it's not even 9:30 yet!  Hopeful that I can find a bit of time to knit/stitch/read/avoid work...we will see.

The other day I mentioned that my friend Leslie has had a poem accepted for a "Poetry in Public" program in North Carolina.  Again, I cannot share that particular poem with you because it has not yet been published and sharing it would disqualify it.  But, I do have two poems of Leslie's that I can share with you.  I like them both.

And finally, a funny that my friend Carol shared with me this a.m.  I'm sure she saw it on Facebook or some social media avenue.

That's it for me!  Have a great day.

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Unraveled Wednesday 11/18/20

 Good Chilly Morning!  

Our cooler temps are still hanging around, but it is November after all.  I think by the weekend though it is supposed to be in the 60's.  If that holds, I think we will be walking on Sunday in Valley Forge Park with Colin & Mailing.  Fingers crossed.  Saturday morning I have plans for Chatter Knitting with Dee...looking forward to that for sure.

On this Unraveled Wednesday, I'm linking up with Kat and friends to talk about what I'm knitting and reading.  First up, the second sock is at the halfway mark on the leg.

I should be able to finish the leg shortly and move on to the Eye of the Partridge heel and then down the foot.  Yesterday I put this aside and instead picked up this

That's my Antler Hat (freebie pattern from TinCan Knits) that I started a hundred years ago (September).  I had knit the ribbed brim and then promptly put it down and let it sit on top of a bookcase in my office.  With this much cooler weather, I had the urge to work on it.  The yarn is Lamb's Pride worsted (85%Wool and 15% Mohair) in the colorway "Bing Cherry."  I'm using a size 8 needle and between the needle and the worsted weight, my fingers and hands are feeling it!  Despite the aching fingers, this is moving along fairly quickly and I should be able to finish this up quickly as well.  This may be for Colin...I have not fully decided yet.

On the reading front I stopped at my library the other day and picked up the latest from one of my favorite authors - Ursula Hegi.  The book is "The Patron Saint of Pregnant Girls."  I will confess that I'm having a difficult time getting into it though.  It seems disjointed somehow.  Have any of you read this?  It may be that I've only picked it up right before bed when I am pretty tired.  Maybe I'll try to read some earlier in the day or evening today.

Hope you all have a wonderful day.  Be sure to check out Kat's blog to see what others are making and reading.

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Tiny Needle Tuesday 11/17/20

 Hello and Good Morning!

Well, yesterday ended up being a longer day in the office than I've had in months!  LOL  Again a busy, busy, busy day.  But, a lot was accomplished and that's a good thing.  I may need to go in one more day this week, but if so, it will be just to print some stuff and then pull an overnight package together for Kevin.  We'll see.

I guess I spoke too soon about no damage at home from Sunday's storm.  Nothing major, but the end of an era!!  25+ years ago Fletch built a tree house in our woods for Colin.  It really was pretty and those two actually spent a night or two sleeping in the tree house.  Colin and his friends would play in it...until one time when they came inside covered (and I do mean covered) in ticks.  It wasn't used after that.  Over the years it had started to sag and tilt, but Sunday the entire tree came down!  

It's sad to see the empty spot in our woods now, but Fletch says too that it is nice not to view the tree house slowly succumbing to nature!

As I mentioned yesterday, my eyes were bothering me quite a bit last week, so not that much stitching was done, but I did manage to do a few things.

Another border section on the right and the start of an owl in a tree.  It's awfully wrinkled - sorry about that, but because I stitch in hand, the fabric gets bunched up while I stitch.

Oh, I have big news for my friend Leslie in NC.  Leslie and I have been the best of friends since we were 55 years!!!  Anyway, Leslie writes poetry and just had a poem accepted for publication/participation in a program called "Poetry in Plain Sight."  

Poetry in Plain Sight: A Statewide Poetry Initiative. Launched in Winston-Salem in 2013, Poetry in Plain Sight brings North Carolina poetry and poets to the public. Four poems are chosen monthly and displayed on posters in street-visible locations throughout arts districts and downtown areas in Winston-Salem and in our expansion cities. The goals are to bring poetry to a wider audience and to support North Carolina poets.

The displays will start next April (2021).  Unfortunately I cannot share her poem with you as that would automatically disqualify it.  Once it is displayed I'll be able to share it though.  Doesn't that sound like a neat program?

Time to pour another cup of coffee and get to work...I can see that emails have been flying in as I typed this post.  Have a wonderful day!

Monday, November 16, 2020


 Hello There!

Whew!  It has been another busy morning.  I'm at the office and have been here 4 hours...still some more to go.  I'm not sure how or why it is still so busy, busy, busy for me, but it is.  Towards the end of last week I found that I couldn't stitch or even knit without my eyes burning and then tearing up...too much time on the computer looking at spreadsheets and the like I guess.  So, after shutting down my computer at 5 on Friday, I never turned it on again until this morning in the office.

The weekend was pleasant though!  Saturday Colin & Mailing came over.  Quoc's pork turned out well (Colin is pretty sure when we had it in TX it was ribs, but I can't remember).

I roasted a huge pan of veggies to go with the meal (carrots, parsnips, turnips, Brussels sprouts, a couple of sweet potatoes and a couple of regular potatoes).  I also made Fletcher's Mom's chutney recipe (and there is enough left for Thanksgiving!!).  After dinner we moved outside for a fire.  Fletch found some pinecones to throw on the blaze that had been treated with something (some chemical I'm sure) to send pretty colors our way.

It was pretty chilly (see the gloves on Fletch?), so the fire felt very, very good.  And it was nice to hang out with the kids a bit.

Mailing said we were invited to dinner Sunday at her parents for dumplings!!  You know I cannot pass that up.  LOL  So, we took a couple bottles of wine over and I made a cake for dessert:

A devil's food cake with raspberry buttercream frosting.  After putting the raspberries on it I decided to sprinkle on some silver sprinkles - hard to see unless you enlarge the picture.  Anyway it tasted good and making the dumplings was fun.

I think in the photo above Zhongren is pointing out a misshapen dumpling that yours truly made!  LOL  I don't have the experience of years and years of folding these things.  They sure did taste good though, and I brought home a rather large container of left overs.  YAY!

A very strong storm rolled through before we left their house.  We could hear hail hitting the roof and rain just pouring down.  On our way home later, Fletch and I had to detour as there was a huge tree that had come down across one of the roads we take.  No damage at home and the tree that was down haad been cleared by the time I drove down that road this morning.

I hope everyone had a good weekend.  I'll be back tomorrow with a TNT (emphasis on the tiny part) update.

Friday, November 13, 2020


 Good Morning!

How are you on this Friday the 13th?  It is still grey here with a bit of drizzle, but tomorrow should be lovely (though much cooler).  Yesterday it rained on and off pretty much all day.  I ran out to get wine (necessity!!) and a few groceries and it was pretty miserable out there and the temp kept dropping.

Work was (again) busy (wonder when this will let up?) and I did not do any stitching.  I did knit a few rows on the sock after dinner while Fletch read, but that was it.  I did cook though.  Dinner was:

A quiche with asparagus, onions, red pepper, bacon and swiss cheese.  Yumsters!!  Plus there are leftovers.  And then last night I baked:

More cookies.  These have dried blueberries, candied ginger, a bit of chocolate and a bit of oatmeal in them.  Tasty!!

Colin and Mailing are coming for dinner Saturday so I thought we could have cookies for dessert along with homemade ice cream.  I'm going to make one of my favorite ice creams - maple walnut.  Dinner is going to be Quoc's Pork.  Years and years ago when one of my brothers lived in Nassau Bay (outside of Houston, TX), we were visiting him and he threw a party.  Quoc, a Vietnamese guy who worked with my brother, came and brought a pork loin to grill that had been marinating overnight.  Oh my - so good.  The recipe is easy.  It is just a combination of Chinese Five Spice, Garlic, Lemon Grass, Salt (or Fish Sauce) and Pepper.  You make slits in the meat and rub the spice mixture all over it and into the slits.  Then you let is sit in the frig overnight before grilling.  We have not made it in years, but all of us were thinking about it recently.  I need to think of what to have to go with the meat.  Maybe some grilled veggies.

Other than that, I have no plans for the weekend.  I'd like to get out walking if the weather cooperates.  And, of course, have time to knit and stitch.

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend - enjoy!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Unraveled Wednesday 11/11/20


It's Wednesday and it's Veterans Day.  I hope we can all take a moment to say a word of thanks for our veterans and for those who are currently serving.

It is a grey day here, but we've had so many beautiful days recently, I cannot complain.  I can, however, complain that once again I did not sleep well.  I woke up too warm and got up and turned on the ceiling fan.  Then I had to shut the window because there was a dripping noise on our patio roof.  Oy!  A couple of hours later I fell back asleep.  There may be a nap in my future today.

For now, I am linking up with Kat and friends to talk about knitting and reading.  Fortunately there has not been any unraveling and...TADA...The first sock in the Aspen colorway is now finished!!

Not only did I finish that one yesterday afternoon, I also got a start on Sock #2:

Messy table which is life,  Little squirrely candlestick is still out and I love the wild cherries in the vase behind the candle.  First pattern repeat (10 rows) is complete on the leg of sock #2...a good start.

Not much to report reading-wise.  Fletch and I are still working through These is My Words and are still enjoying it.  Not real compelling and a bit gruesome in places (scalping and what not), but it is an entertaining read.  On my own reading, I finished This Book which is the first in a series.  I enjoyed it.  Again, not great literature, but entertaining and I am now waiting for an email from my library telling me that book #2 is ready for me to pick up.  I'm just happy to be reading again!

My morning in the office went well yesterday and I accomplished quite a bit.  There were a few more people than normal in the office (like there might have been 8 of us), but everyone was distanced and masked.  I saw Bobby (CEO) and Bill.  One other guy that I had not seen since March - it was nice to catch up.

In the afternoon I managed to do a little archery.  Tyg was curled up in a ball sleeping on a bed so I took advantage of that time to go out.  But...I think I was very tired.  My arrows were going all over the place - lol - and not hitting the target.  I gave up after shooting 25 arrows and called it a day (that's actually when I finished up Sock #1 above).

Work is shaping up to be a bit busy again this morning, so I'd best get at it.  Wishing you all a wonderful Wednesday!