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!

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Tiny Needle Tuesday 11-10-20

 Good Morning!

Another pretty morning here - gorgeous sunrise.  And mild - about 50 outside right now.  Yesterday really was such a pretty day, and I was pretty busy work-wise.  I did not get out for more archery as I had hoped/planned...too busy and Tyg was out ALL day.  There is never any telling where he is, and he often goes out back...the way I shoot arrows, I can't take any chances with him outside.

But here we are on another Tuesday - specifically Tiny Needle Tuesday, or TNT.  I did a bit more stitching on the Quaker sampler this past week.  Here is an overall shot.

Some more creatures among more motif stitching.

A stag!  And I'm not sure what that is next to the stag.  A hedgehog?

And a wee acorn!  Or, not so wee as when you look at the whole sampler you can see the acorn is the same size (or bigger) than the little mouse!

Next up I think I will do some more of the border.  Or, perhaps, an owl in a tree to the right of the stag.  We'll see what I'm in the mood for the next time I pick up my needle.  And, of course, I have knitting that I'd like to do.  Too many projects and not enough time!

Wishing you all a wonderful Tuesday.  I'm heading to the office in a little bit, but I don't plan to be there long.  Bill will be there, but Kevin cancelled his plans to fly up.  I can't even remember the last time I saw him!

Monday, November 9, 2020


 Good Morning!

Looking like another beautiful day here in Eastern PA.  The weekend was absolutely gorgeous - in so many ways!!  I think we are all breathing a little easier today.  Lots to be done - hard work, hurdles to jump, etc...but we are moving forward...finally!

Saturday morning I met up with Dee for some coffee and chatter-knitting.  As always it was so good to get together.  That night Fletch and I had a fire.

We could hear a bunch of celebrating going on in our neighborhood.  Lots of music and fun going on.

Sunday was my day for chores.  I did grocery shopping and 3 loads of laundry.  When I got home from the grocery store, Fletch was vacuuming!  He said he had gotten so aggravated and frustrated working on a project that he took a break to vacuum the guest room.  Ha!  My response was:  "we need to get you aggravated a little more often!"

Tyg was very lazy on Sunday and mostly stayed inside napping, so I took the opportunity to do a little archery:

More arrows hit the target than not this time!  It felt good to draw back the bow again and get moving!

Our Red Bud is just about naked now as are many of our trees.  The burning bushes are gorgeous now.  That one by our shed is even more red now!  BTW, the wood up against the woods behind the target is to stop any arrows that go over the target from going into the woods...and believe me that has happened!  I overshoot or undershoot more than I get on target.

Now it is back to work.  I'm heading into the office tomorrow to see Bill and Kevin and do a bunch of color printing.  Most likely I'll just be there for the morning.

Wishing everyone a great week!

Thursday, November 5, 2020


 Good Morning!

A quick post as I've got a busy work morning.

Here are the cookies I made yesterday.  They were ok.  Not great, but good.  I think there were too many pretzel bits in the recipe (it called for 3 cups of broken mini pretzels...probably 2 cups would have been better).  The sea salt caramel truffels are good, but when they melt it gets pretty messy on the cookie sheets and some of the caramel oozed out and burned.  I guess all in all I'd rather eat a Take Five bar (plus...more chocolate that way!).  But, it was fun to make something different.  Fletch likes them.

It was great to see Colin & Mailing again last night - we had not seen them since their wedding on October 10th!  They look good and it was a nice evening for a fire.  We sat out from around 8 p.m. till 10 p.m. and by then I was pretty tired, so we headed home.

That will do it for me.  Have a great Thursday and a wonderful weekend.

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Unraveled Wednesday 11-4-20

 Good Morning!

It appears that we made it through yesterday.  I have purposefully stayed away from the news (Fletch had some CNN on for awhile yesterday, but I avoided looking).  My two bosses - Bill and Bruce, both voted in person yesterday.  Bruce and his wife arrived at their polling location at 6:50 a.m. and had a 1.5 hour wait.  Bill and his wife arrived at their polling location at 7:05 and had to wait 2 hours!  I'm so glad Fletch and I voted early by mail.

As usual, yesterday ended up being a little busier work-wise than I had hoped/planned.  I was able to get home by 2 p.m.  I did a bunch of cooking between checking emails and working on a few things and then Fletch and I rearranged a few things in my office space - switching out a table with a lamp and the filing cabinet my printer sits on.  The fit is much better now and I actually have a bit more space.  Win!

But, due to work (why does that always have to get in the way?) and moving furniture and cooking, really no knitting was completed.  And therefore, no unraveling.  The sock is now at the point where I will start the heel flap.  

The other item in the picture is my beginning of Antler Toque by TinCan Knits.  I started this months ago (I think) and got to the point where I will start cables and then kind of forgot about one does...but even though it is supposed to be in the upper 60's by the weekend, we have had some really cold weather, so I think I'd best get moving on this one.

However, I have other plans for today.  First of all I do need to do some work.  Secondly, I plan to bake some cookies!  The other week while grocery shopping I came across a package of Nestle Toll House Sea Salt Caramel Truffles.  So I bought them.  The recipe on the back sounds so good - lots of butter and sugar, flour, broken pretzels - I think these will end up being like Take Five candy bars which we love.  Sweet & Salty - YUM!!  I want to get them made today because we are going to Colin & Mailing's after dinner tonight for a fire...I plan to take them most of the cookies (plus the loaf of pumpkin cranberry pecan bread I made last week).

Here's hoping your Wednesday will be a sweet one too.

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Tiny Needle Tuesday 11/3/20

 Hello and Good Morning!

A beautiful (though chilly) morning here.  The sun is shining.  I wonder how crowded the polls will be today...not very I'm thinking.  At least in PA so many have already voted (Fletch and me included).  The goal today is to stay steady and not get dragged down into any doomsday scrolling or unnecessary worrying.  I'm remaining optimistic.

Welcome to Tiny Needle Tuesday - or TNT - the first in November.  I managed to do a bit of stitching this past week.

Some more little pieces have been added to the whole:  a bear (oh my!!), a couple of leaves and some rose hips.  Also more on the side has been completed.  Some close ups:

It is fun to have little bits and bobs to stitch as a break from the border...and then it's been nice to go back to the border after doing a leaf or a bear.  Overall this continues to be a fun piece to stitch (thank goodness!!  I don't need another WIP).

Open enrollment for me started yesterday.  Hoo-Boy!  Another increase in employee contributions.  I haven't looked yet to figure out what this means for my increase.  Usually it's one step forward (pay raise) and then two steps back (employee contributions to health insurance rise).  I might need some happy pills - lol.  Meanwhile I'm heading back to the office today.  I've got a few things I need to do there (primarily print in color and on ledger paper and meet up with Bruce).

Hoping everyone has a great day!

Monday, November 2, 2020


 Good Morning!

I seem to have survived the time change (Falling back is always easier for me than Springing forward).  It's a bit chilly outside and the wind is howling.  So noisy!  Windows are rattling and I can hear our buoy bell (which is way out in the back yard hanging on the shed) clanging away!  I plan to just stay inside today.

Not much to report on the weekend.  I did meet up with Dee at a fairly new Starbucks on Saturday for some (as Dee says) Chatter Knitting.  The new Starbucks is nice - spacious and clean!!  Not crowded.  It was perfect.  I did a little grocery shopping after that and ended up roasting a chicken for dinner.  I had been in the mood for a roasted bird for some time and it really hit the spot.  I have bones and meat saved for soup...but we need to consume more things out of the freezer so I actually have room to put left over soup!

The sock is coming along nicely.  

The Aspen yarn is so pretty!  I have (I think) about 10 more rows (1 pattern repeat) and then I will start the heel flap.

The kitchen floor has finally been mopped (see...I told you there wasn't much to report from the weekend) and the laundry was all done.  Exciting times!!

We did not go over to Colin & Mailing's as we had planned.  Yesterday was a solid rain day which did not bode well for a fire.  By dinner time the rain had pretty much stopped, but everything was soaking wet.  Another time.  We invited them for dinner next weekend, but they have plans to go backpacking on the Appalachian Trail with some friends.  We will catch up with them at some point!

Well, time to pour another cup of coffee and start the work day.  Let's make this a great week, shall we?