Monday, December 31, 2007

A Knitting Year in Review

Here is my version of a year of my knitting review. It is more enjoyable if your speakers are on. :-)


Saturday, December 29, 2007

Just Leafing Through

I got up this morning to take Lily outside and to my surprise it was 70 degrees outside! What in the world? I check the thermometer, but yep I was right spring time!
So not to miss an opportunity such as this, the hubby and I decided to rake leaves in the front yard while the weather was cooperating.
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It was a nice morning, warm, southerly breeze. Then half way through our leafing, the winds change and started coming from the north, bring with it cooler breezes and the promise of a front!
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Well, we decided to shift it into high gear and we were finishing up just as the first rain drops started to fall. Now it is a gray sort of dreary day outside only 53 degrees and an excellent day for knitting. I am about 80% finished with a hat for my neighbor. He is out of town, and the weather will be even colder when he gets home so a nice warm hat and scarf will be a welcomed, welcome home gift. (I hope).

But, before I can finishe the hat I need to go to the store and luckily there is a Borders on the way so I will be stopping there first.

But then whats for dinner? Hmmm I know!
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Happy Knitting!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Dogs On Thursday

Well, Lily has expressed her interest in yarn on more than one occassion but she has finally decided that I wasn't listening to her pleas to learn to knit so this morning she decided to make her wish very well known.

I was not a first hand witness to her intentions but she relayed the message to the hubby by waltzing into the den with a hank of Lorna's Lace in her mouth! A new hank, recently purchased on my yarn shopping spree!

Now I admit that I am sometimes guilty of missing subtle hints but I think this message was extreme!

The Lorna's was safely retrieved by dear hubby and resting in a very high location when I entered the room. Lily was laying in the floor looking very guilty and very sad that she thought her attempts and telling us she wanted to learn to knit had gone unnoticed yet again. I assured her that I got the message and would start teaching her tonight, but not with the pretty blue varigated Lorna's but maybe something a little easier for a basset with no thumbs.

She seemed happy with that and went off to play and seemed to ignore the rest of the Lorna's Lace, the Noro and the wooden sock blockers!

We will begin basset knitting tonight, to prevent any future yarn destruction in Lily's attempt to teach herself!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Need Help Finding a Pattern

Hi Everyone,
I was hoping someone out there might be able to help. I friend of mine,
Lori found an ad for a pattern called: Leaflet # Z-123189 Quick-as-a-Wink Vest.
Put out by Pat Trexler Crafts. But it seem that Pat Trexler Crafts may have gone out of business. It is for a ladies vest.

If you know of where she might be able to obtain a copy of the pattern please let me know and I will pass it along. Thanks!

Email me at mlwstoryATgmailDotcom

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Mystery Shopper

Today was a wonderful day. We decided this morning that the weather was not cooperating with our plans to do yard work, so they hubby and I decided it would be a good day to go for a drive and oh while we are out I could spend my gift certificate to Knitting Sisters So we headed out about noon and I drove to historic Yorktown to show the hubby some projects I am working on down there, and we walked around the Riverwalk Landing It was a little chilly on the river and the tourist have all gone home and we had lots of room for walking around. We just happened to walk into Colonial Fiber Arts and just had to buy a little something. . .
hhmm a mystery bag
Myster bag

What could it be?

Contents of Mystery Bag

A 1/2 lb of Louet Roving in Light Brown Coopworth! Just yummy! and a pair of hand wrought scissors. These are the small ones they have a larger pair and they are much lovelier than the photo shows, but you are definitely not getting on a plane with these!

We met the lovely owner. We walked around a bit more and moved on to Knitting Sisters

Kntting Sisters Bag

The ladies are closing the store for a week and who can blame them they work very hard all year, but it that created with Christmas being only a couple of days away made the store a bit busy today. They even tried to sell the hubby some yarn! He was very kind and pointed them in my direction which resulted in this:

Knitting Sisters Score

A pair of small Fiber Trends sock blockers. Some Noro Kureyon sock yarn, some Lorna's Shepherd Sport sock yarn in Seaside and Cool. Two new sets of sock needles #1 and #2s and a Manos Cottage Cotton Collection Pattern book.

We had a a lovely lunch at The Polo Club That is one of our favorite places. The folks there are just wonderful and friendly and the drinks are good, so is the food. :-)

It was a wonderful knitty day! We came home the hubby and set up the new DVD/VCR so I could watch some Christmas movies. (Yes, I still have movies on VHS) But I have to watch "White Christmas" with Bing Crosby at least once you know.

So I hope everyone else is having a wonderfully knitty weekend!

Happy Christmas Knitting

Friday, December 21, 2007

Christmas Time!

What I love about Christmas time, well the spirit of the holiday itself if important to me. The hubby and I don't exchange gifts with each other, we do give them to family and friends. One we are very fortunate to be able to buy what we need or want at any given time and seems silly to spend a bunch of money just because it is the holidays. So we try to remind ourselves what it is all about and do a little extra for others. I enjoy that.

I enjoy seeing the excitment and wonder of children during the holidays it is just so magical to them and to remember when it was like that for me as a child is a warm and fuzzy memory.

Even though I am an only child Christmas was a big family tradition, my fathers parents came for breakfast on Christmas morning, we went to my mothers parents for dinner and all the cousins etc would be there. It was a wonderful time and a wonderful memory.

We always had a live tree and my uncle made a special stand for it. It was tradition that my mother and I decorate it after my dad put it up, as I got older that tradition grew to include wine, which spawn another tradition having to redecorate the tree the morning after! My dad would get up the next morning and just shake his head as mom and I tried to make the tree more presentable.

Another tradition was my grandmother on dad's side making potato candy. It was so good and I have never been able to duplicate it. But it was made with rolled out potatos with peanut butter spread on it and rolled into a log and chilled in the frig. It was super sweet and I loved it as a kid. Every time I try to make it, it turns into potato and sugar soup!LOL

What are some of your favorite holiday memories?

On the Knitting front, scarf for neighbor not done yet, plan on pulling an all nighter tonight. It is about half done and it will need a matching hat, plus a set for her hubby!

Well off to knit! My you have fly fingers this weekend if you are also trying to finish up Christmas projects!

Happy Knitting!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Secret Santa!

I belong to a wonderful online group of basset hound owners and each year we do a secret santa. This year Halle, had my name and she sent me a personalized mug made with all three girls on it! Some knitters had soap and cookies for the girls!
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My secret santa partner upstream is still waiting for her package despite my having mailed it weeks ago, she is a knitter as well as a basset owner!

I hope she gets it soon!

Happy Knitting!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Two in One Day

Productive Weekend

Well it was too short as always but at least I was productive. I started and finished two hats this weekend in addition to my normal weekend chores; you know laundry, vacuuming etc.

Saturday, the hubby and I were feeling like we needed to be abused so we went to the post office and then to the mall! Well since we didn’t have to shop on a deadline it wasn’t too bad, if you don’t mind people walking really really slow in front of you in the mall. I have a pet peeve with this sort of behavior and it has in the past caused me to think horrible thoughts like body checking old people and pushing baby carriages out of the way. I’m not a mall person at any time of year but holidays, no way!
There was a lined wrapped I don’t know how many times around to see Santa, and they were behind the Santa ropes and out of the way, it was all the looking loo’s stopping to wave to people in line or watching a particularly cute baby get their picture taken. In principle I have nothing against, Santa in the mall, cute babies or people who admire them, but it is like driving people, pull off to the side!
Bang! Ouch, that was me falling off my soap box.

So Sunday, a cold and blustery day, the kind of day that makes Winnie the Pooh stay in-doors. So I thought Pooh probably has the right idea. So I stayed in-doors with my comfy sweat pants and t-shirt.
I did chores, I make potato soup and I knitted two hats.

The details, the first hat I actually started on Friday but I finished it Saturday night while watching SNL reruns. (That counts as an FO for the weekend right?) Sunday, I had a pouch of potato/broccoli soup mix. I put it in the crock pot with the required about of water then added fresh potatoes and cooked ham. It turned out very yummy and was quite nice on a cold day.

Once the laundry was started and the floors cleaned, I put in a movie which turned into three movies and cast on a hat with earflaps. (A first) It turned out quite well and I finished it at about 8pm last night.

I also have to say that I am very sad to report that I was disappointed in the last Harry Potter movie. It came out on DVD this week and I bought it while I was out on Saturday.
(I don’t go to movie theaters for the same reason I avoid the mall). I have to say that is was the least eventful in my opinion of the movies and it so far is the one that left the most out from the book. I realize the books are long and the movie would be 4 hours if they put everything in there, but still they could have done a better job with the fight scene, where Sirius is killed that is quite the battle in the book. I’m not sorry I bought the movie, I would have wanted it for my collection anyway, but I sure hope they do a better job with the next two.

This morning on the way to work I cast on a pair of socks. I haven’t done a pair in a while and was feeling the urge. I also plan to cast on a mobius wrap for my neighbor tonight and use the socks as my portable project. I have a chili red yarn and is just screaming to be made into something warm and cozy! So my neighbor will have something to wear to church soon (I hope)

So to sum up: The knitted gifts for my hubby’s niece and her family are now done. The ear flap hat goes with a matching scarf for her little boy. A hat and scarf set for her hubby and then hat, scarf and mittens for her. They will be on their way soon. I already sent them something for Christmas so this is really just a winter gift in case it doesn’t get there on time. I have a few like that actually. I have sent two boxes to a friend in PA. Who is really cold, this week, they are in danger of losing power in her neighborhood.

And the same for another friend, I shipped Christmas presents early and sending follow up knitted items. LOL. My way of meeting deadlines without the pressure! LOL.

And a note on my blogging lately. At my new job (which is going quite well) we cannot get to certain sites and so my blogging is some what limited from work unlike before, where I could sit in on a day like today at lunch time and blog.

*So I am having to type up my thoughts as they come to me and then post them later. Especially if I want to include any pictures.* So I apologize if my posting seems sporadic.

Happy Knitting and to all my friends in the northeast, stay safe and warm!

The weekend!

I love weekends! Well who doesn’t really, but winter weekends are the best, a cold winter weekend. A fire in the fireplace. A good old movie and knitting!
It also helps if you have built in foot warmers like a basset hound or a lap warmer like a bulldog!

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It helps to know you have warm yummy soup simmering and nothing but happy Christmas projects to work on. Who cares if Christmas is closing fast, these are happy snuggly projects! Like hats and scarves and other warm yummy things.

Than then there is reality!

There is the last minute gift for the neighbor that you put off til the last minute knowing that was the one gift you didn’t have to ship. That means out and about and of course if you are already out you might as well stop here and there and then you must grab lunch!

Of course, it is all very fun and all the pretty decorations and the spirit of the season and all, but in the back of your mind you know it is cutting into your knitting time and there won’t be any time to build a fire and let it property heat up the house. The soup will have to wait until later when it has the proper amount of time to slow cook and let all the flavors blend.

But that is okay, there is still another day in the weekend to be savored. And soon there will be a four day weekend, when no shopping will have to be done and the projects will turn to things with no deadline and of a more personal nature. But there are still so many things to make or up coming birthdays!

Ah the weekend!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Dogs on Thursday- Food!

Wow this week is just flying by, I can't believe tomorrow is Friday already. I'm happy about it, just can't believe it snuck up on me so quickly.
The girls got a fun box in the mail this week, there were some lovely treats for the two leggers in the house but the girls received a lovely cookbook.

We have a friend in Texas who comes up with the most thoughtful and enjoyable gifts each year, and the best part is the proceeds always go to help a worthy cause.

The cookbook is very appropriate it is called "Cooking the Three Dog Bakery Way" by Mark Beckloff and Dan Dye.

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With yummy recipes like this one:
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What do the girls think?

Rosie says, "why aren't you in the kitchen instead of standing there taking my picture"!
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Lily and Molly ask:
"When is it going to be ready"?
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They all three say, Thank you, Melinda!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Thoughts

I read on Monday that over the weekend a boy that I had dated briefly in high school passed away. He was only 39 years old. I hadn’t seen him since high school, we went out a few times, broke up and he changed schools. I never saw him again, as is the case with many people you get to know if high school, he had moved out of the area. It doesn’t name the cause of death, it did mention that in addition to a job as a Naval Designer he worked as a firefighter and EMT, so I don’ t know if it was job related. He had been married only two years, my heart goes out to his wife.

I have to say it was somewhat disturbing to open the paper and see his high school picture there with the announcement. A dear friend even called to see if I had seen it. She went to a different high school than I, as well, but she remembered him as he hadn’t lived far from her.

Again, my heart goes out to his wife and family for losing someone so young.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Monday, Monday

FO’s

I finished the elusive scarf but with a design, I need more practice with my fair isle technique and it isn’t quite ready for gifting just yet. So I will save that for another day. Instead I found two lovely motifs to incorporate, one of a star (lone star) and one of Texas. I call it Chai Texas. I love the color reminds me of chai tea. Its actually called sandstone. It is 57” without the fringe. I immediately started on a little hat to match. I am hoping to finish that tonight but that might be wishful thinking. I had plans to knit on my lunch break, but it is 10am and already 68 degrees today. Go figure nearly 70 degrees and two weeks until Christmas. I envy anyone with snow right now.
We have rarely ever had white Christmases here, but I remember once as a child we had a white Easter. It is rarely very cold here in December, the coldest month is usually February and we get more ice than snow anyway.
It is my goal one day to take a vacation at Christmas time and go somewhere with snow. 
My next goal is to finish this hat, knit up another quickly and then a pair of socks all in time for shipping before Christmas. Think I can do it? I have the yarn and the patterns, the question is do I have enough time?
Have you seen the beautiful lace work Margaret is doing? She just finished this lovely shawl. She is a wonderful inspiration to me and hopefully others as well. Go check her out
Margaret
There are so many wonderful projects being down out there and especially this time of year.

Also, it is one year ago this week that I began knitting, one whole year I hope I have improved during that time. I think I have but such a long way to go yet. But the journey will at least be fun! I had big plans for all the things I was going to knit this year that for one reason or another didn’t materialize, mostly because I don’t seem to knit very fast. But I plan once again to knit through out the year wonderful gifts for loved ones next Christmas. While adding to my own wardrobe.

Happy Knitting

Sunday, December 9, 2007

AAAH The Weekend and Then Some

Well dear friends, it has been a crazy week or so and I haven't been able to get anywhere near my blog until today.
To review: November 30th was my last day at my old job. It was crazy and fun. I was still trying to train my replacement but some things can only be experienced and I'm sure she will be fine. My co-workers and I went to lunch and they gave me a nice framed collage of funny pictures of all of them. And a $50 gift certificate to Knitting Sisters . A fellow knitter in the office was in charge of that and it was a wonderful thought! I can't wait to use it!
That weekend was a whirlwind of activity finishing up the Christmas shopping etc. Monday I started my new job and had some sort of orientation or meeting the first three days so didn't actually get to spend a full eight hours in the office until Thursday. But, I can't tell you how relaxed I am now with this new job. No stress, able to sleep again, it is wonderful.

Yesterday I mailed the last of my packages that had to be anywhere by a deadline and got my hair cut, I had wanted to do that before I started the job but just didn't have time. And I went to my usual girl who cuts it just the way I like it and she and I got to talking while she was cutting my hair and bam! Cut way shorter than I wanted it, I mean really. It isn't bad, but it is just sort of shockingly short, more of a summer time cut than winter. But, it is only hair it will grow back and in a week it won't look so bad.

I haven't even put up my tree or decorations yet, but I plan to go to the attic today and decide what needs to be brought down. I'm not sure I will go all they way this year since I have waited so long to decorate (two weeks behind my normal decorating schedule).

All this week it has been cold in the low 30s what you might expect for December, but today it is supposed to be in teh 60s and near 70 tomorrow.

In knitting news I have completed two spa sets, one in a yellow and blue colorway and one in yellow. I found some lovely lavendar soaps to fill the soap bags with.

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I have also regrouped on the scarf that was plaguing me and figured out a nice unique pattern for it and will have that finished today. I will post pictures when it is done.

Happy knitting!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Dogs on Thursday

I can't believe how close we are to Christmas. I have yet to decorate anything, which means the girls don't have their Santa suits unpacked yet. But that will make a nice DOT post sometime in the near future. For now the weather is still mild with highs in the 50/60s. The leaves are still hanging on the branches and are a lovely array of fall colors. Lots of yellow and orange. The acorns are unbelievable this year. I thought with the drought there would be small and not very plentiful, but boy was I wrong. We can't take the dogs out with them getting some piece of an acorn pod stuck between their paw pads.
we had the girls out for a walk night before last and Molly suddenly start limping, no wimpering, just a sudden limp. It was dark out so we stopped under a street light and pulled an acorn pod thingy from between her pads.
Then yesterday, Rosie came in from the back yard and was walking funny but not really limping. When I went to investigate, you guessed another little pod thingy between the pads. The bad thing is we don't live in an area where the deer will feel comfortable to come and eat the acorns and there are more than the squirrels can handle. Not to mention the hawk couple that has taken up residence in the neighborhood has thinned the squirrel population a bit.

Lily and Molly though continue to have a good time looking for critters entering the yard.

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And Lily is eager to play.

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Monday, November 26, 2007

A lot to be thankful for...

This is the close of a long weekend for me. Giving me only four days left at my old job before starting my new on next Monday.
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and many things to be thankful for.
I had intended pictures for this post but right now technology is not cooperating so let me just say that I am thankful for the following:

Spending Thanksgiving with family and the new little ones our family will be enjoying soon.
Our freedoms, the ability to travel freely in our country without fear or checkpoints.
A warm home, plenty of food and a job that provides enough to support my family.
Friends, at home and in blogland! A special hello to Amanda, Margaret and the Dogs on Thursday gang!
Having my Christmas shopping completed. :-)


In knitting news, I have completed a second facecloth and soap bag. I have finished one slipper and working on the second. The slippers dont' look like they do in the picture but I followed the pattern very carefully. The leg portion and cuff is in a knit pattern though clearly the picture is not. But, they look nice just the same. I have worked out the problems with the scarf that were plagueing me, more on that later. I plan to have pictures soon as possible.

I have discovered the trick to shopping the weekend after Thanksgiving, forget Friday all together go at 9pm or later on Saturday and Sunday, I did both nights and you wouldn't believe it, there was hardly anybody in the stores, which were well stocked and still had sales! So with the exception of one or two items I have completed my Christmas shopping!

Happy Knitting!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Confounding Weekend

Okay so I was hopeful, I was even encouraged I was ready to start the I-Cord trim on the baby bog jacket. So at first for the life of me I couldn't remember how to do an I-cord trim on the jacket, I could make the I-cord itself but couldn't remember the procedure for attaching it to the jacket. I have no idea why, I've done it before, so in a fit of impatience I decided I would put a different trim on it and couldn't find anything I liked so I started crocheting a trim edge on it. Why is that news, because i don't know how to crochet. So I can't remember to the I-cord I have before and suddenly I know who to crochet. Okay. Then next I find a fatal flaw on the collar and sleeves and have to frog everything I had done on it that weekend.

I became frustrated with it and put it aside for a day or so and worked on my set spa set. Since they knit up quickly it satisified my need to feel as if I had made progress this weekend.

One thing I did accomplish this past week is this:

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And took a few pictures of the sky. For some reason I managed to not take knitting pictures probably a subconscience response to baby bog jackets plot against me.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Pictures of my Hunters by request

Here are some pictures of my fearless protectors and hunters. My flower garden is safe from hungry critters with these two on patrol.

Lily:
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Molly:
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Lily and Molly:
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Rosie (there sister) "don't bother me I'm sleeping"
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Happy Friday!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Wees had an exciting night

Mommy went to bed early last night so being the good companion that I ams, I went wif her. But by twos in the morning mees and mollys was bored. So wees protrolled the house. Mollys took the den and saw an intruder so she called for mees. I confirmed there was in fact a vicious intruder lurking near the fence.
I wanted to save my beautiful falcetto voice for when the intruder actually came ontos our property, but Mollys couldn't wait and having a voice of a car alarm she sounded the warning. I could hears mommy running up the hallway in her slippers. She came to the door by humans having poor eyes couldn't sees the intruder and so she opened the door and out we went, that stinking bunny rabbit won't come back for a long times. We ran up to the fence and told it to get away and not eat our mommys mums.
Mollys and I checked rest of the yard and everthings was fine, so we went back to bed. Mommys petted us and said we did a good job sounding the intruder alert, but maybe bunnies weren't so dangerous! NO Appreciation, I tells you!

Lily B. Hound

Monday, November 12, 2007

Happy Veterans Day

Happy Veterans Day to all you are serving, have served are have a loved one in the military.
My dad served on teh USS Gainard, DD-706 during the 70s. My grandfather served during WWII and lost half of his leg to a land mine. So to all those who have served and especially those who were wounded. Thank you!

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I am off today as the County is closed today in honor of Veteran's Day.

So I am using the day to relax a little and get some knitting done. I have scrapped the scarf for the moment, it was not turning out the way I wanted and I was afraid if I stared over it wouldn't get done in time for Christmas. So I have tucked it in the knitting bag and started some spa sets that are quick and easy to knit up. They consist of a facecloth, soap bag, slippers, and eye mask. I have the facecloth and soap bag done and half done with the eye mask and I plan to have that finished today and start the slippers today as well. I am knitting everything but the slippers in cotton.

Yesterday was also a day of backing. I baked a loaf of white bread for sandwiches this week and a loaf of banana bread. Although I have to admit that neither was from scratch this time. The banana bread mix I thought at Trader Joe's on Saturday and it turned out really well.

I hope everyone else is enjoying the holiday!
Happy Knitting.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Happy Happy Joy Joy

This has been a really week! First, I got a new job, so excited about that!I will be working as a Planner in a neighboring county. I'm looking forward to that! I was interviewed on Friday and got the call on Monday afternoon. The people who I have met so far seem really nice and the buildings are all new so it looks like a nice place.
Larry got a clean bill of health this week so we are excited about that! But, now Lily is limping don't know why but I don't think it is her paw but maybe her elbow. So will have to take her to the vet.

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Also, I need to buy a new PDA, does anyone use one that they really love and recommend? I don't want a phone/PDA just a regular PDA. I'm thinking of an ASUS.

In knitting news I'm making a lot of progress this wee on both the scarf and the jacket, so that is good.

I have a meeting at 7pm tonight for work so I am going in late so I have spent part of the morning knitting.

Also, Halloween was fun. If you ever thought your job was hell, imagine going to work and seeing this!
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It's hard to see the horns in that picture but trust me there are there.
We had a lunch on the lawn activity our employees associates sponsors them once a month and they have grilled chicken, hamburgers, hotdogs, whatever, this month was also the employee Halloween party and chili cook-off. If you went to the lunch in costume you received a free dessert. So naturally we had a few takers in our office.

Put me in coach, I'm ready to play!
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And remember the magic 8 ball? Well we had a walking talking one, but you can see the 8 in the pic, just the magic window!

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And of course, the Halloween tradition may not have started in the U.S. but that doesn't mean we can participate with American pride!

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And here is the gang on the way to lunch.
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It was a fun day. And the week is almost over and I have one more week to go before I start my new job. These are some of the people I will miss, they are a great group and the people that helped me the most while I was there! Jason, Matt, Leanne, Ellen and Cheryl, I'll miss you guys! And can only hope I meet people just as nice and generious with their time and knowledge as you were to me!

Happy Knitting Everyone!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Contest!

I'm going to have a little contest here to help raise money for the MDA event. I need to spread the word! I don't get involved with a lot of fund raising events because it is so much work and I'm often afraid I won't be able to give it the attention it deserves, but this one is important to me. I think the money is spent wisely and it stays in the community. There are some kids with some real needs out there and I hope I can help.
November 15th is the day I have to have the funds raised and it is the day they are hauling me off to jail, complete with a mug shot, which I will post here.

So here is what I want to do. I am going to give away an Southeastern Virginia themed swag bag. I don't know all the items to be included yet, but it will be yummy and knitted related too!

So here is how it works, if you include a link to my site on your webpage telling folks about the contest your name goes in that hat, if you link to my page and make a donation your name goes in the hat twice! Just email me or send me a comment to let me know you've done either and we will get the ball rolling.

The drawing day will be evening of Novemeber 14th!

Please help me help some children with Muscular Distrophy. Thanks!

Rain, Rain!

We are finally getting rain and I mean real rain with thunder and downpours and everything it is great. It has been raining for two days and I think we got two inches yesterday. Today has been even more. It isn't enough really to get us back to where we need to be with the water table but it is much needed.

Here is a sunrise the day the clouds started to roll in it. What a wonderful sight.

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And a little nature shot from lunch yesterday. It was raining so it is a little unclear but there are beautiful red berries on the tree.

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I took the day off despite having to play 20 questions with my boss as to why I wanted the whole day off. I mean please! I have the leave and we have three people in Fridays. Anyway, ya'll keep your fingers crossed I've had two interviews this week. Something has to happen soon! So after my interview this morning, I came home with the intention of takeing the truck for inspection but that is when the downpours started and I didn't want to deal with the traffic with that. So I waited and thought it would stop, it didn't so the truck will have to wait until tomorrow and I took Molly to the vet instead. She her annual check up and the vet said for 11 years old she looks wonderful!Hooray, Molly! He didn't really like that I don't feed her very much commercial food, but there are two houses of thought on that issue and both old fast to their beliefs. One of the vets thinks its fine I feed the girls, steamed rice, pasta, baked or boiled chicken, liver and raw beef. I don't feed them anything I wouldn't feed my family. they do get a high quality kibble mixed in and vitamins so I don't think they are missing anything and he did say before he knew that, she looks darned good for 11 years old. She still acts like a pup too, runs and plays with Lily who is only 2 1/2. So unless something happens to make me change my mind they are going to continue to get their diet I prepare for them. Also, this diet had helped Rosie's skin allergies tremendously. She still has issues but nothing like she used to and her coat is so soft and shiny. So he means well I know but my girls are doing great and I see no reason to upset a good thing. But, love our vet just the same.

In knitting news, still working on the scarf and jacket, not much change there, sadly.

Hope everyone is planning to enjoy their weekend! Great weather here for more knitting!

Happy Fall ya'll

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Tada! 100th Post

Today is my 100th post since starting my blog nearly a year ago. I started it right have I learned to knit last December. I have learned a lot and made so many wonderful knew friends! Thank you for sharing this milestone with me.

It has been an interesting week, the hubby wasn't feeling so good on Thursday due to a trip to the doctor, he is feeling better now but we are waiting on test results still. I hate the waiting. Friday, I was feeling a little under the weather due to some disagreeable chicken salad and my boss asking like a horses patoot. I left at lunch time and didn't go back. I just couldn't do it. Ever had one of those days, when you just know, that no good will come of any further human inteaction. It seemed the best course of action given my state at the time. Others do not seem to agree, but thats okay, whats done is done, can't wait for Monday! Not.

Today is a picture perfect day, all the clouds have been chased away by the breeze it is a nice low 72 degrees and a good day to sit and watch the clothes dry on the line. There is talk of puttying windows, but so far I haven't seen any action in that area yet so I am enjoying my freedom from domestic chores at the moment, except for the occasional break to hang more clothes, one does need variety even in something as mundane as watching the clothes dry. The excitement of the different fabrics drying at different speeds! Who needs NASCAR?! Okay maybe I'm still feeling the affects of the chicken salad.

In knitting news I am still making progress on both the scraf and the jacket, here is photographic evidence.

The jacket nearing the halfway point.

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The scarf not near the halfway point. This is my first attempt at fair isle, wow! Lori asked if I hold a yarn in each hand or let them drop. Well, when I'm only using two colors I hold them but in the instance when I am using more I let one drop. I am still perfecting my technique here. I hope this comes out okay. I have decided the hat will be a little more simple, stripes no fair isle.

I am still struggling in the land of selling a vehicle. I have had lots of interest but no buyers for my RV. It is taking a toll I am so tempted to donate the thing and be done with it, but they hubby is not happy about giving it away. I had an offer to trade it for a VW bug that is not street legal, an SUV with an oil leak and a radiator leak and a dining room set. If anyone had a tug or a trawler we'd be in business! Or maybe a yarn store they wanted to sell to retire in an RV somewhere, wouldn't that be perfect!

Can you believe we are half way through October and the holidays are almost here. Seriously, I'm not ready I have way more knitting to do to be ready, we need a slow down here folks I need more knitting time!

Well back to it! More to knit!

Happy Knitting!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Can You Help?

Hi Everyone,
I got my donations webpage up and running. The history behind this is the county where I work participates every year in funding raising for MDA. They have a fun theme where the volunteers are "arrested" and have "bail" set. I will go to jail on November 15th and need to raise $3,000 in bail to be able to return to work.
I know knitters are generous folks by their nature, if you could please help me get out of jail and help me raise money for children with MDA it would be such a tremendous thing for the kids!
The website has a link for online donations as well as a list of what the money will be used for, things like wheelchairs, or giving a child the chance to go to camp when the might not otherwise be able to go.
Thank you so much!

Here's the link:
Bail Milly Out of Jail

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Sweater Sunday

Yes, I actually finished the sweater today. I seamed up the sides. I don't think it is a great job as I am not yet very good at seaming but it does look like a sweater and it does fit so there is success! The hubby was quite convinced during the in progress stages that it wouldn't fit, he was pleasantly surprised today. I don't know why it took me so long other than I am just all about the process, even in cross stitching I have a drawer full of things I have cross stitched and never framed, fabulous things on linen and other uneven weave, but for me it is the enjoyment I get from the process. So I guess the same with the sweater. It has laid neglected in my sewing room/office on the blocking table for over a week completely dry and ready to be sewn up.
Also, let me say that I was so anxious to prove I had actually finished this, I didn't fluff my hair, I am just back from taking Lily on a hike down at the park and was wearing my "Knit" baseball cap so the hair is less than desirable. Or maybe that model isn't even me.

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In other knitting news, I frogged about 8 inches of the scarf yesterday I wasn't happy with the way the pattern was turning out, so I frogged it back to nearly the beginning and started over and am much happier with it now. I have not had time yet today to knit. In addition to taking Lily for a little hike, I then had to take Molly for a walk. I didn't have 25ft leashes for both of them to have a romp in the park so it meant two seperate walks, which is fine I need the exercise as much as they do. Rosie had not interest in anything today that simulated manual labor. Here is the end result.

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Also, it was Sunday so that meant baking bread for the week. I baked four loaves, plus make pizza dough which I used for dinner tonight. I had some herbs to the pizza dough and it really came out nice. It was a ground beef, chicken, onion and cheese pizza.
The before...

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and the after...
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Also, it was nice enough to day to still hang the laundry outside for that fresh air smell I just love. Nothing like going to sleep on linens that smell like the great outdoors.

While I toiled away in the kitchen the hubby waxed the hardwood floors today and other manly chores.

Yesterday, was also a full day as we went to watch glider planes. They hubby loves planes and is facinated with gliders. I don't know not my thing really. I mean they just seem to circle around and around and land. The hubby assures me this is all quite facinating, something to do with the ability to fly without benefit of an engine. Who knows.

So to recap the weekend what have we learned?
In the baking department learned that a critical step not to be missed is the adding of oil to the pizza dough before adding the toppings, otherwise said dough can become soggy. Tasty but soggy.

From the knitting department, I don't care if it does say machine wash on the yarn label, hand wash it. or all this little ends you left poking out will fray like the dickens! And adding a nice I-cord to your collar because your stitches were a little uneven and looked pulled will make the neck hole smaller. Point taken.

Hope everyone got to knit something this weekend!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Sleeping Dogs on Thursday

It's Thursday, woohooo! It seems that every other picture I have of Rosie is of her sleeping, but that is her second favorite past time so hard not to get a picture of her doing it. But, seriously is this comfortable?

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She was admiring my knitting handiwork and fell fast asleep in my chair.

I have been plagued with a migraine for the past two days, today I had to break out the ice pack just to get through work, I did leave a couple of minutes early though. I am feeling much better now that I am home and have had my medicine, which is "iffy" taking at work, sometimes it makes me sleepy. And lately it seems I have slept almost as much as Rosie.

Have worked on both knitting projects in the past 24 hours, but it doesn't seem like I gotten very far, but progress is progress!

Hope everyone is planning a wonderful weekend!

Happy Knitting ya'll

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Mid-Week Check Up

Well, it is a busy week already. And it only Wednesday. So on the knitting front I am working on the baby bog jacket and the scarf. The pattern I came up with is working out pretty good after a few adjustments. I have never attempted fair isle before and I think it will be a while before I attempt it again. Wow! But it is moving right along, right now it doesn't look much different than a regular scarf knitted in the round at the moment. And I have to be careful about posting too much because the recipient might be reading this right now! :-0 LOL.

In fun fund raising news, I got a call today and I am going to jail for an hour to help raise money for MD. The County participates every year and they have one of the police officers come and put you in handcuffs and then they take you to a local hotel hosting the event in a limo. And you sit there for an hour and call people trying to get donations. Then you get the limo ride back. So it should be great fun.
I will be setting up a website to donate online ahead of time and will let you know as soon as that is up and running. And hopefully you might be able to help out with a dollar or two? I'll have more info on that soon.

We got a little rain in Williamsburg this morning first time in a month, it wasn't raining in Hampton when I left there no rain there since something like June or July, very dry there, which is a bummer because the trees and leaves need it. And another bummer because I can't use my outdoor fireplace.

Today in a fit of inability to make a decision this morning I brought both projects with me to work on at lunch today.

Hope everyone is having a good week so far!
Happy Knitting

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Thursday - The Light at the End of the Tunnel

Hey hey, it's Thursday and that can only mean two things, first, it's Dogs on Thursday! Whoohoo! and second, it's almost Friday, whoo hoo hoooo!
So I have to work late tonight so I stayed home this morning some with the pups so they could have more play time outside, except they didn't want to go out and play they only wanted to sleep! It is really humid here today like 80% humidity and poor Rosie is really feeling it the humidity bothers her so, but the AC is on and that should help her out a bit. Her ears were yukky and I had to clean them twice before I left the house this morning.
But on a lighter note, I got to go shopping on the way to work. Now, I'm not a big shopper, I'm not into going to the mall etc. But, once in a while I get the urge and I needed some dressy tops for work, so I stopped and bought two on the way to work, big shopping spree! LOL. Then I drove the parkway into work along the river and it was such a nice pretty view while listening to music.

I'm stalling in the knitting department, although last night I did get some rows done on the baby bog, and the hat. I will probably finish the hat tonight if I'm not too tired from the meeting tonight.

I plan to bake some more bread this weekend. I think I will experiment with the recipe a little and see if I can jazz up the french bread with something.

Happy Knitting Everyone!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Kneading and Knitting

That is how I spent my weekend. First the knitting, I finished a hat and scarf set, started another and worked on the baby bog jacket.
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It is purple with pink snowflakes emboirdered onto it.

The kneading, I decided I needed to start baking my own bread. I can never find what I want in the stores and they always have so much yukky stuff liked bleached flour (I don't want to think to hard on how that happens) or gluten. So I decided the best way is to start making my own. Now, I have to start small and simple because I have never done this before. In fact when I was a teenager I had a neighbor who baked bread for her family for the week on Sundays. It took her all day and I would come over to help watch her baby so she could get it all done. Her hubby would not eat store bought bread. Her house alwasy smelled so good.

So today I started with a simpe french bread recipe:
1 1/2 tbsp. active dry yeast (that a packet and a half if that is how you buy yours)
1 tbsp. honey
1 tbsp. sea salt
2 cups of hot water, (hot tap water is fine, you don't have to boil it)
6-7 cups of unbleached flour

Mix the yeast, honey and salt and mix. Add the hot water and stir. Add 2 cups of flour and mix. (I used a wooden spoon)
Put the spoon away and then add 2 more cups of flour at this point you are using her hands (I recommend putting some flour on your hands to keep the dough from sticking and also taking off your rings unless you want a baked surprise.)
Add the 5th cup of flour and keep working with your hands, pour the 6th cup of flour on your kneading board or counter top whatever you have to work with and dump the dough from the bowl to the kneading board you may need something to help you get the dough out of the bowl.
Then there is enough flour in the dough it will not stick to you or the board anymore, but knead for another 10 minutes anyway.
Once you have finished kneading and you have a big ball of dough put a few drops of oil back into the bowl (don't clean in the bowl first) and roll the dough ball around in the oil. (I used olive oil)
Place the bowl with the dough in a warm place for 1 hour for the first rise.
After an hour poke your finger in the side of the dough halfway to the first knuckle and see if the hole you makes holds its shape, if it does your in busines if it fills back in, let it rise some more.
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So now it is time for the fun part, punching down. The yeast has built up gas in the dough and you need to get it out of there so you punch it down and take it out of the bowl and start kneading it again. You will hear the gas escaping the dough and you will feel the little bubbles in it as well, work them all out.
Then you can start shaping your dough.
As this recipe is for french bread, you want to divide the dough into four pieces and starting from the center of each piece roll it into a long bagette about 1 1/2 inchs in diameter. Place then on a baking sheet that has been greased and coated with cornmeal.
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Keep them apart don't let them touch, and let them rise under the same coniditions as before. The second rise is only supposed to take 1/2 the time which would be 30 minutes, but mine didn't look like they had risen much so I let them rise for another 30 minutes (1 hour) total for the second rise.
After that hour all looked well, I cut three diagnol slices in the tops to allow the bread to rise upward instead of outward while baking, slathered with cold water and put it in the oven for 10 minutes at 400 degrees after 10 minutes I slathered with water again and let it back for another 15 minutes and viola! It's done!

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And Yummy!


I also watched a horrible B western movie and helped the hubby change the oil in the truck all and all it was a productive weekend.

Which makes me not look forward to tomorrow at all.

I am thinking of taking a real estate class, it is the one that preps you for your license. It is online and you can start it anytime and the cost isn't very much and I am thinking it might be either a good career to fall back on or switch to full time if I need to.

I'll keep you posted.

I wish you were all here to have some French bread and a little wine with me this evening!

Friday, September 28, 2007

You Can Lead a Dog to Grass. . .

Lately Rosie has developed a new quirk. We take her out the back door with the other dogs to do their business or play or whatever. Normally, once outside all the dogs go to at least the edge of the grass and get business taken care of before running off to play. Not Rosie. Now she has never liked going into the grass because of her allergies and will avoid it at all costs, but lately there's a new twist. She won't do anything when we take her out, I mean we can sit out there for an hour waiting on her, nothing.
So my hubby had the idea to try something different. He took her back in the house and out into the same back yard but through the side door of the garage...BINGO! Instant business! Why? I have no idea, but that is what we have been having to do all week. Quirky.

Hey today is Friday and guess what!? I am off! Yep thats right I took the day off. I have the whole house to myself. I can play my music loud, watch chick flicks and knit! Sweet!
I mentioned once before work was getting a little crazy well in the interest of not allowing them to drive me crazy I told my boss I wanted a mental health day. He started to laugh until he realized I wasn't kidding. I told him Planning and Postal both started with "P" and it I needed a break. He signed the leave slip right away. Hey whatever works. So plans for the day? Yep your right, seaming up that sweater!
I also, have started a scarf and another baby bog jacket. So I will busy busy today.

Oh and guess what, you remember the very nice lady who gave me the fleece for me to get started with on my spinning wheel? Terri with the sheep and the dogs and the lovely little farm, well she has more fleece, but here's the exciting part, she has some from some sheep she has lost and it is a small herd and very dear to her, so she has asked if I would be willing to spin the wool into yarn and make her a keepsake blanket to remember the sheep she has lost! OH My Gosh! I would be so honored to do that for her! So part of the day will be more spinning practice because while the thought of doing something so special for someone is amazing, I certainly want it to be perfect so practice practice practice!
Also, earlier this week I finished a scarf and hat for a friend's little girl for Christmas pics to come this afternoon.

And thank you everyone for all your wonderful suggestions on my southwest scarf question. I also, stopped by Knitting Sisters and talked to Meg and she gave me a couple of good ideas as well so here's the plan.
I'm going to knit up a swatch, print off some knitting graph paper and make my own design (A first) and then knit in fair isle in the round. This could get interesting we are tackling a lot of firsts here. Naturally I will post pictures along the way.

Well, I'd better get started this morning lots to do, lots to do!

Happy Knitting ya'll!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Need Pattern Help or Idea....

I am looking for a design or pattern with a southwest flair to it. I want to use it for a scarf, but I have having trouble finding such a pattern.
Does anyone know of such a pattern where I might buy it etc?

Any thoughts, ideas, places you know of that you know of would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks!

Happy Knitting!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Aaaah, the Weekend. . .

Well, it was too short as they are always are, but it was nice. The weather was beautiful although today was warmer than it has been in a week, but very nice, just the same. I didn't do half the stuff I wanted to.
But, I did have a nice ride in the country over to Gloucester and through West Point back over into Williamsburg (James City County). It was a lovely drive and I went to Gloucester Courthouse area which is historical area and very much the main street of a small town community. I was driving and so no pictures (sorry :-( ).
We went to the bookstore, because what is a weekend without a trip to the bookstore? But I wanted to look for a couple of books on getting into real estate. I found a couple. More on that in the days ahead.
We had to get some food for the pups and ourselves so a trip to the dreaded grocery store was in order. I do not like grocery shopping. I will do just about anything to avoid it. But, I can't let the pups go hungry and so while I was out it only seemed logical.
So we had cornish hens for dinner, yum! Again, no pictures. I have really keep lax in that area.
But.... I did go to the library in town (City of Williamsburg) on my lunch break and took some pictures there. It is a lovely little library and they have two fountains out front, I got pictures of one, too many people were standing in front of the other and it uses recycled water. So it is pretty neat. They have chairs around both so that you can enjoy the area and read a book.

Inlay into the sidewalk of the Frenchman's map of the City of Williamsburg.
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View of fountain.
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Another view.
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View of the community center across the street.
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On the knitting front, I have started the hat to go with the scarf. I worked on it some this weekend hopefully will have that finished by Wednesday.
Pictures of the sweater are coming I promise!

Saturday was Rosie's 7th Birthday! She got some special food as a treat. And tonight she got some fresh read meat in her dinner. She is a happy puppy!

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And because I know she will read this soon I wanted to say hello to by dearest friend in PA. Hi Boots! Love you!

Happy Knitting Everyone!