Sunday, May 31, 2009

Very Suspicious Activity...


I look out my sliding glass door, and see this:

Well, this is very interesting...I just cooked pork steak on the grill two days ago...

What's with all the sticks?

Will you look at that?


Yep. A blackbird (Starling). Noisy bugger and a very messy "grillguest". We have another one that nests in the cover for our propane tank. The baby birds have flown the coop from there, and we've removed the trash to discourage further nesting this year, but now...

How the heck are we going to grill for the next several weeks while baby birds are hatching and being fed?

Sigh. Looks like we won't be grilling for a while, and I'll have quite the mess to clean up when she's finished.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

The Blog That Almost Wasn't..

Yesterday was my hubby's 53rd birthday. He's getting to be an old fuddy duddy, but last night he was pretty lively.

His sister and brother in law flew in with their kids, his kids and grandkids and his mother and me, and his other sister were all there--we had steak for dinner, which hubby grilled--having taken that task over from his father's passing, and then for dessert, we had a special pumpkin style pie and ice cream cake (two kinds!). It was a serious party with lots of loud children and balloons. Jeff had a BALL!

His son got him an envelope full of $2 instant winners, and so far, he's won $28--and I got him a couple pair of work pants.

This is sort of a mis-nomer--since he's laid off. 33 years working for a company, and he doesn't have enough seniority to bump anyone! That's horrible! So he's going on unemployment and sub-pay until something else pops up--he's hoping that people will retire this go-round, and give him an opportunity, but if not, he's pretty much planning on retirement. Retirement with no dental or vision coverage, and no vote in union matters.

The whole ordeal has left him with sort of a resigned feeling, and he's NOT happy about it, and he's been sort of puttering around the house. Which is fine. He's doing laundry and washing dishes. Now if I can just teach him how to make a meal, I'll have a house husband! Yippee! Seriously, though, I need to spend extra time paying attention and talking with him or he gets lonely. Pretty soon he'll be calling me at the office.

As I was driving to work yesterday morning, I spied a red motorcycle with a tan Coleman Caboose on the back. This would be my ex-husband, who told me that he had the trailer painted--though I wouldn't have expected it to be TAN, but I digress. He was ALONE on the motorcycle, and it was between 6:30/7am, which seemed to me to be WAY early for anybody who wasn't working to be on the road, for anything...and then I remembered the day he left me--he rose from sleep at 4am, quietly as he could, packed his gear in a box, and very well intended to leave without my knowledge, never to return! I skewed up his plan by waking just as he was carrying a box of his things to the car, and HOY! Was I ever upset!

The entire incident caused me to wonder if perhaps he'd done that same scenario to his current wife, Julie?

I also figured that there was no one he knew in that direction, except for my sister and Ray, so I contacted Ray to let him know that my ex might be on his way for something--but later, Ray informed me that my ex never turned up. Then I thought to contact my sister--who's birthday was also that day, to wish her happy birthday...I know that she maintained a relationship with my ex--having been cleaning his house and babysitting his step kids--he even gave her away at her wedding (which I couldn't bring myself to go to--and the part about his being in her life still galls me to this day--how dare she betray me in such a way!!!) Ah, digression, thy name is Tenna.

My sister was preparing for work, and didn't have a lot of time, but caught me up on the latest family news on her end of the spectrum, and neither of us mentioned my ex--someday, the issue will come to bear, but for now, I simply can't bring myself to discuss it with her. If she was on the internet, she could read it here, but she's 53, and hasn't got an internet connection, so I doubt very much that she ever will have one. Bummer.

So, with those options basically "out", and no real other items that he might travel northward for, I decided that something else was going on, so I drew cards.

And this is what I drew....

You're being petulant, and trying to force an issue which basically died in committee, you are no longer the center of attention as you wish. You need to be more diplomatic with people if you want to get your needs met. That argument you had? Well, it backfired, and now compromise is the only way to go.

But you see, my ex never was one to compromise. If it didn't suit him and his needs, he would pout-get angry-and finally LEAVE. And that's been the case in his last two marriages, why would this one be any different?

I believe the cards are telling me that he and his wife had an argument the night before, and that he has packed his things into the motorcycle trailer and left her--likely to think about what he wants his life to be like--perhaps to "get back to nature", which could mean a lot of things. I'm fairly certain he didn't go north to gamble. The problem is his house. I certainly do not believe that he would leave his house behind--so that's a chink that I haven't quite figured out. If he's contemplating divorce, it's likely he's concerned about losing that. Then again, if it's bad enough for a person, some people opt to leave everything behind, even their kids, and simply disappear with only the clothes on their backs.

The bigger problem is that he's "out there" again. Chasing rainbows. This could be when he finds the red-headed female Harley rider that he cheats on Julie with.

I feel sorry for Julie.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

New Tarot Deck

I just bought a new Tarot Deck, called the Psychic Tarot. This deck is incomplete, not having any of the court cards. The 10's are separated into 7 chakras or centers within the body...I haven't tested these cards yet, but the box gave me a pause to consider.

I really need to find another Tarot group, similar to the group I belonged to on Yahoo that would do three and five card draws and you had to divine what was going on.

Ah, I do miss that.

I'm past the cuff on the socks. I've done the first pattern row (three times, misreading the graph twice!), and I'm preparing to work the second row.

So I will pull cards in the Celtic Circle deck...

Asking for general guidance, I draw

10 of swords, reversed (Disillusion)
Knight of Swords (Change)
3 of Swords (Discord)

Beware the belief that all is well. Change is in the air, brought about by a "too gun ho" attitude, which could spark an argument.

Therefore, back to my knitting, before I become too mired in the details...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Working on Socks!

Once again, working on socks. I've missed it. The pattern is from #14 Yarn Forward Magazine. A pair with cables snaking up the leg and down the foot in a light blue, but I am making mine with a hand dyed yarn, which is some pretty spectacular colors! I only have about a centimeter done, so there's no point in showing you--but IF you were party to a post from a previous time that was completely unrelated to knitting, and seemed to be directed at my ex--well, sorry about that.

I found out this afternoon that he's been quite literally "copying the mail". The man continues to stalk me, even though we've been divorced for 20 years, but it's more likely that he's trying to catch me saying something bad or nasty about him.

I'm quite a bit above that, but I'm sure he thinks otherwise. I'm not entirely sure why--unless he has deluded himself far above the norm--even for HIM. I have better things to do than to chase rainbows. I'm really glad he's gone, and hope that he stays gone.

So, ask the cards, I say...

Queen of Cups Reversed (Intuition)
3 of wands Reversed (Foundation)
Page of wands (Potential)
King of Wands (Fire)

Whew! Look at all the fire cards!

Worry and anxiety is causing health problems. You're being obstinate, unwilling to admit that you need some help. You have many talents and lots of potential--head in a forward direction, because everything you pursue turns out golden--fire up and get moving. The way is open for leadership and success even while you pursue it with the vigor of a bull!

So I'm going back to my chair to knit on my socks--success there is assured, with or without my cards! :)

What CAN I say?

My friends say I'm a fast knitter.

I think I'm just a little better at time management (perhaps--I'm really a procrastinator). Since I hate doing housework, I leave it go, and sit down and knit my heart out until I'm so tired I can't sit up straight, and then go to bed.

Well, I do take a short break to make something for supper.

And last night was no exception. I ate a chicken sandwich. Hubby ate leftovers, too. And the hotter it gets, the less apt you are to find me in the kitchen. It's the last place I might go!

So I accomplish a good deal of knitting. Since the Civil War Shawl, I've opted for a fair number of small projects--something quick and easy to finish in a few hours. I've made several potholders,

a doily and a dishcloth.

In between, I've been taking pictures of everything,

but somethings have to bypass our venue the picture I took of a crochet bag at the store. I figure I can recreate it at some point.

But lately, I am on a lace "kick". I have purchased and downloaded several lace patterns, most of them shawls, and I don't even WEAR shawls. What is wrong with this picture? I just really like the process. I like the finished product and how it initially looks like a big lump of oatmeal, but after blocking, looks like a piece of artwork! Yesterday, I bought another lace book (Estonian Style), and I'll take it to the office with me today to peruse. I also bought Grumperina's favorite shawl, Path of Flowers (see Sidebar for Grumperina's site where she has posted non-stop about it), and I'll buy the yarn online, if I can find it in a color I like.

But sometimes, I figure, you just gotta relax with your cat.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Power's Out!

Why does it always seem to go seriously awry when I have a plan to do something-the power goes out?

I can't do dishes except by hand--God knows I'm not that serious about getting them done. I can't do laundry-and I can knit but if I want to actually SEE--must move my chair over by the window.

I called in the outage--certain that it's the power--since even the meter isn't running--ha! That rather surprised them.

I can blog only because I have a Blackberry--and it is from that same Blackberry that I write this. I feel trapped inside--and all thumbs


So, I move the chair amidst much grunting and heavy breathing. There.

I wonder what made the power go out this time?

Memorial Day Weekend-The Alma HIghland Games

Well, so sorry that I didn't get ANY pictures. It's a shame. I had my cellular phone AND my camera with me, but I never really had the chance to get either one out, and since I was there only Saturday--well, it just didn't happen.

Saturday started out with getting ready to go, shower and all the usual stuff--I forgot my medication and had to head back home for it--and then I only brought enough to last me to Saturday night! Idiot MOI!

The drive was fairly uneventful. I arrived at the Ithaca McDonald's and ate a sandwich there, took my meds and continued on to Alma and Ray's house. He and I decided to take two vehicles, because mine was so full of STUFF that there was no room in my car for him, and there was not much call for transferring to his car, so we drove separately. We found great parking spaces. The day was threatening rain. We walked in to the festival field and over to the Re-enactor's tents, inquiring how we could get all my gear over there without making ten million trips. How convenient! They had a hand cart!

So Ray and I borrowed the hand cart and went back to my car, loaded up and locked the doors and back to the re-enactor's tents to set up. After that, things were pretty settled, until it came time to do the parade. I felt up to doing the parade, but didn't know if I should, until they asked me to carry the banner. Unfortunately, there was no room for me in the vehicles to ride up to the front of the parade route, so I walked there. It's about a mile in the wrong shoes, but I made it. My shawl was in the parade, and I feel very good about that. When the parade got underway (almost 2 hours later), my shawl was right out there in the front of the group. It was cool how every so often, the sargeant would call "Make Ready", and I'd have to move out of the way so that the muskets could fire. They also had a cannon that they lit off about 4 times during the parade. It was LOUD, and I jumped every time, which caused giggles in the parade attendees! :)

We arrived toward the end of the parade, and there's Ray, sitting inside some sort of covered cart, watching the parade--nice and dry.

"I didn't know you were going to be *IN IT*!" He said. I just shrugged and went on by. Later, he told me that he'd thought he'd seen Randy--but that he'd left before the parade even started. Frankly, I think he may have been mistaken.

So then, when the parade was over, we walked back to the festival grounds, and I got out my wheel and started spinning. The sun came out. People started to show up, and asked questions. Ray showed up and offered to buy lunch. I knit a bunch on my doily, too. I couldn't spin much because the sun was SO hot.

The massed bands/opening ceremonies began, and I watched from the sidelines again this year. Cried like a baby. "I should be out there", I wailed! Indeed. Back to spinning and rhythmic pedaling. More questions. More answers. Beeswax candle-making. More cannon fire. Baking pies in the dutch oven. Baked beans. Competitions. I got to watch the Grade I band Peel Police from Canada play. Their lead drummer is a hot ticket. VERY good drummer. Makes it look easy!

Ran into several friends from Flint, some from Grand Rapids. Some from Ann Arbor. The day was totally full. After closing ceremonies, I brought my car around to the tents. Completely exhausted from sun exposure and the parade, I loaded my gear and headed for Ray's house. Tired and hungry. We drove to the restaurant and had supper, and then back to the house for dessert and knitting and a little television. I opted not to go to the ceilidh. I was just too dog tired, and my feet hurt besides. Best to put them up and relax.

That's when I realized that I didn't have meds for Sunday.

And so I packed up my gear and headed for home. To a surprised husband who thought I wouldn't be back until Sunday night. Oh well. Sometimes, that's how things go, right?

On arriving home, I finished the doily.

Then I started to crochet a couple of hot pads for my friend Mary in California. She sent me yarn for them, and I did them up. This happened on Sunday. They are so CUTE! Apparently, the cotton was an ombre, and the balls were just a tad short of material--I did run out of yarn for the two. The ones I put on my wall had plenty of yarn and then some left over--and I was very wasteful with it--but not on these skeins! I ran out and had to buy a neutral shade to put on the second hot pad. End result? You can't even tell that the two aren't from the same skein. It's pretty amazing that I was able to get such a close match.

Now that those are finished, I can work on a pair of socks. I decided something smart and quick was in store, before the market bag--which will be the next long-term project.

Then the fair isle sweater makes a comeback. I have to finish it for fall wear this year. Should be a fairly quick knit, because most of the hard part is done--there is just finishing to do now--attache sleeves, do the steeking, neckband, button band, pocket band, and wear it.

Sunday, Hubby and I drove to his mother's. He worked in the yard, while I relaxed in the house and crocheted.

Now, it's Monday morning, and I'm thinking "where'd the weekend go?" I'm still sore from head to toe from the parade, and next year, I might opt out, and just sit on the side and spin like I did last year. That sounds like a real plan. Maybe some coffee to help me wake up? I'm hoping for a lazy day, but I have laundry and dishes to do. Thank goodness I had the presence of mind to buy a large pan of lasagne, so that I don't have to cook at all this weekend!

I pulled the Ace of Pentacles reversed this morning. It's entitled "Adventure", and stands for the beginning of a new direction, usually in financial matters. Reversed means that something doesn't quite work out the way you planned. As if there WAS a plan in place, but there was difficulty enacting it or going forward with it, because money was a problem. Hmm. Interesting. The only plan I have today is staying home and doing housework. Would that I got paid for that, eh?

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Update on Doily

But first, I drew a card for the day. Asking "What's up with Hubby? How come he's so ornery lately?"

Okay, drew the 4 of Cups Reversed, titled "Discontent". Okay, while reversed would seem to mean "not unhappy" about something, I wonder if it might indicate that he's THINKING that he's discontent, rather than ACTUALLY feeling active discontent, which can be equally damaging.

It would seem being laid off isn't setting well for him. I can understand that. The cups of course, are up-ended, meaning that he's likely to pour out a ton of frustration, and that can indicate dire consequences--he could lose his temper, his medication might not work. It might be affecting his entire mental stability--a whole host of things.

So there is cause for concern. I'm hoping that this and next week pass quickly.

On to the doily--
Here's the update at 44 rows:

Here's the update at 54 rows:

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Ladies Room Discussions

Or "What You Always Wanted to Know! But Was Affraid to Ask".

First conversation is about brazzieres--how this one is three sizes too small and quote "I take it off the second I get home!"

I wonder--did she grab her teen daughter's that morning in her haste? If not, is it then because she hasn't bought a new one in forever? Beyond that, aren't you supposed to buy new every six months and earlier if you are blessed (or cursed) with an amazing set of hooters? If her body style hasn't changed--why buy it in the first place if it cramps your style holding things up and out uncomfortably?

I guess I'll never understand that one.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


I was going to start the Flowered Market Bag, but decided that right now was not a good time--what with Alma coming up and all, to have to drag around all those skeins of yarn, so I started a knitted doily.

I remember in the old magazines, Aunt Martha's and Coats and Clarks advertisements in hand-drawn patterns for different things. And here I have a small booklet with absolutely no copyright information, except for this small drawn woman in a plaid dress with a 50's sort of style--

Holy cow, am I dating myself or what?

So I took a pic of the final article. I am 40 rows into it--I'm not certain how many rows are in it, but I can't imagine that there are very many more. The pattern states that the blocked doily is approximately 15"--17" if you use the bigger crochet cotton (size 10 now), and I just don't see it, but I'm plugging away. You should be able to see why I want to knit this doily, right?

Here's what it looks like on my needles, though...

Not much to look at is it? This is the wonder of blocking. It really brings out the professional finish of an article of knitting, evening out stitches and making the ugly duck turn into a trumpet swan--a truly amazing transformation! I am knitting my heart out in anticipation of that "swan moment". :)

So while I blog here with my 16.9 oz bottle of caffeine, I drew cards on my ex again--no particular reason, other than to know what's going on with him. Here's what they told me:

Cover: 2 Swords Reversed (Opposition)
Crossing: 7 Cups (Delusion)
Recent Past: 10 Cups (Rewards aka the Wish Card)
Head, or Goals: 6 Swords (Solace)
Immediate Future: Page Cups (Reflection)
Foundation: 3 Wands Reversed (Foundation)
House: Page Wands (Potential)
Friends: King Wands (Fire)
Hopes: Ace Swords Reversed (Intellect)
Outcome: 9 Cups Reversed (Stability)

Inner conflict increases your delusional thinking, and the wish granted in the recent past has not resulted in the peace of mind you were hoping for. Spending time thinking about what may or may not have gone right or wrong continues to plague you and upsets the applecart, making you feel lost and vulnerable.

Home and family continue to offer the most potential for your life, too bad you don't have the ability to accept it and live within it. Some counsel from the wisdom of an older man you admire and trust (to a point) will be offered, but it's more likely that you will continue to follow your own way. Consider that failure to use the brains God gave you will result in further instability in your life.

Aw. What a shame!

So then. He's conflicted! Well, that makes sense. He's still got leaving on his mind. Not a good story. I feel sorry for his wife. She's going to be alone soon. Perhaps she'll feel happier about it than I ever did.

Saturday, May 16, 2009


I came in to the office with shawl, sheet and fish line, pins and a strong desire to get er done, but having finally pinned the center (at least MOST of it, I find myself short on pins so I need to get more--the store doesn,t open until 9 so I'm outdoors waiting.

While waiting I traveled to another store nearby to help dissolve some time and bought 3 skeins of cotton worsted.

Then back to the store of choice for pins and what turns out to be miscellany--a holder, a magazine, and a pair of ginger's scissors which were on sale for 30 percent off!

Back to blocking I go!

Unfortunately, it didn't really work--I ended up finally pinning it to the bed...but there was still 1/8th where there is a ruffle and I didn't even block the border! The center of the shawl needs to come out another 2", and it's already as big as my BED, which is Queen size! This thing is a monster.

You know, I keeps saying "never again", but somehow, I just don't believe myself. There is something wonderful that happens when you finish a big project.

Unfortunately, it was taken down to sleep (who'dathunkit?) that night, so I never did get a picture--so you're going to have to wait until I can get my outfit on and my husband outside on a nice day to get some really good ones.

Got to get knitting, I started another project and like how it's going, and want to knit a little before I head out to the office.

Storms, Floods and other WATCH OUTS!

We've been having thunderstorms just about every other night the last week. It's been murder on my sleep patterns.

The dog, however, doesn't seem to mind so much.

Today, the plan is to take the Civil War Shawl in to the office where there are large circular tables, and set out a sheet, pin and stretch to the sheet on top of the table. I will be all morning, as I intend to get there early. As soon as the animals are fed and watered, I'll shower and

Run Amok.

No knitting last night--I was sore from sitting at my desk all day, and I'm sitting improperly again. My hip has been bothering me, so I took a couple Advil and then took a nap, which really didn't amount to any real "sleep", so much as rest.

This morning, the air is so wet from the storms that my head is all congested and I can barely breathe. I hope I survive.

I've got a sock on the needles that the dog chewed up.

Must remember not to leave socks on the floor...she likes the smell and the taste of a sweaty sock apparently. I can hear all of you saying


But that's a dog for you.

So I had to rip out the toe where she chewed the hole, and stick it back on the needles. Luckily, I still had some of that yarn left over, so it's waiting for a little time to be re-worked.

We made pork steaks on the grill last night, and because the grill was HOT, I didn't cover it back up...then of course, it storms last night. So now the cover is a wet mess. Why does it always rain the night you grill and you're so lazy because you had to take 3 Advil for pain and got no real rest most of the week, so you're tired and grumpy and tearing away at the seams. So you don't do that last little task, and now have to deal with a soaking wet grill cover?


Just before waking, I saw a name on my work computer screen in one of the programs that I use--and I'm keen to find out if she exists. Just to find out WHY her name came to me in the last few sleepy moments between actual sleep and wakefulness. I had to get right up and put her name in my Blackberry so I wouldn't forget it. Just now, I had to refer to it in order to remember what it was. Of course, I can't post it here--you never know. She might well really exist, and I would be guilty of breach of confidentiality. But it's utterly weird that I would dream that particular name, since I've never seen it before, and since I don't know anyone by that name, I wonder why I would dream about it.

Well, the dog is in, and I've got to get my arse in gear and get going on my day. The next time you see me, I'll have my shawl on!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Finished Projects

A cloth...

A Potholder...

And another potholder on the needles...guess I'm on a potholder kick.

Today was an odd day. I managed to get quite a bit of work done, but never felt very productive. I sat in on a meeting and took minutes, but that's not normally something I do--it turned out pretty interesting, and everyone said I did a good job with the minutes. We'll see how it goes at next week's meeting, when we discuss old business and new business. I never was really good with Robert's Rules.

How do you like my owlie? Yes, I crocheted him, too.

Next project will be another dishcloth--Monthly Dishcloth--to catch up with the month's cloths and get the pictures uploaded to the files section for the group--so that I can be included in the drawing for the 24 cloths a year.

It's starting to look like I'm going to have to give Verizon their Blackberry and Broadband card back--they charged me over $200 for one month's usage, and that's even more than what I was charged the first two months, so I'm really MIFFED. I walked in to the store, and sat there, and sat there, and sat there. Finally I left. I don't have time to sit and WAIT on THEM. It's their mistake, and they should be providing the customer service to help me get the issues fixed, but they simply aren't doing it. I never EVER had a problem with Sprint. I should have stayed with Sprint.

At some point, I have to address their problems with fast service--and in writing. Perhaps on the web. I'm not sure. I want to get the most bang for my buck. I don't want to have to wait over an hour for it.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Another Finished Project!

Monthly Dishcloth is done, but I just take the pic and find out Blogger is down. Now, at the office, and not a thing I can do about it, but I will upload it later.

I have some serious worries about my work--oh, not about layoff or anything like that--but about someone who used to work here, that left for medical reasons, then retired. This person has no backbone, and I seriously hope that they don't hire her back. I like her well enough as a person, but I know that she really doesn't like me--in fact, she was the one who took me off the project for the computer system that she and a couple of other people made, and this POS is just awful!

And the people who more or less "created" it, LEFT for other jobs (or retired), and now we have been limping along with it for the last two years, trying to make it bend to our needs, and it has some SERIOUS issues.

Nuff said about that--but it was this person who retired who was so "nice" about it all, and so willing to take LESS THAN we really needed--that I'm afraid is trying to come back to work here, and I SERIOUSLY (did I use that word yet?) don't want her hands in it again, because she HAS NO CLUE how to get the best product for the money, in other words, how to make the programmers to create what we need, and to make it WORK efficiently--not just limp along and slow everyone down.

Nuff said about that. Rant over, I suppose.

I wish that Twitter had a web application, rather than an SMS application. I don't text message because it costs too much. I use the web a LOT, and Yahoo Messenger for the Blackberry uses the web--not SMS--for messaging, which is VERY cool, and I can chatter with folks all day long without fear of being charged extra for it. I got my bill for my blackberry this month, and once again, a huge shocker! $202!!!! That's more than the first bill, which if you'll recall was for two months and only $320 (which at the time, I thought was high--until I got this bill!). So something is wrong with this bill, as well, and I have no clue. They are overcharging me to the max. The $42 credit DID NOT show up on this bill, and now, considering that it should be for 3 months, it's not NEARLY enough.

Boy, today is turning out to be a real RANT day, isn't it?

So now, I have to go in to Verizon AGAIN, and chatter with them about my bill. It should be ONLY $160 a month--$60 for the Broadband, $67 for the Blackberry and $40 some for the house phone! I have no idea where all these extra charges are coming from!

In the meantime, I have a doctor appointment this afternoon, so it's a short day.

More later, and the pic of the Monthly Dishcloth.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

She Needs A Break!

So she started to work on the Monthly Dishcloth for the Yahoo Group.

It's a daisy. Make it in yellow.

So she's a little over half done and past the bobble. It's turning out real cute.

My hubby said it looks like a boob.

My reply? Takes one to know one.

Monday, May 11, 2009

It Counts, Right?

Yesterday, I finished knitting my Civil War Shawl. Start to finish, a little over a month and a half. And they said it couldn't be done....

Today, I sewed up the edging seam--it's not great, and I'll likely redo it someday, but for now, it will be fine.

It isn't blocked yet...but I'm still counting it as a finished object.

A BIG finished object. This means I get a cookie, right?

Sitting at my desk, I'm having a doosey of a day, trying to keep from thinking about the task at hand--blocking. I really hate blocking. The yarn is soft and smooshy--it won't block like a cotton thread would--dressing may become an issue. I need a BIG area to spread out a sheet, and before you say it, I can't use my BED--I sleep there! As do the dog and the cats, and what do I do when it's 11pm, and everyone wants to go to bed? Fold it up and toss it in the closet???????

I think not.

I had considered using my mother in law's circular table, but I think it will be too small for this monster. The outer rim is nicely ruffled--it's possible that the article should have gone down a needle size for the outer edges to take out some of the ruffling...I'll keep that in mind for my next one.

Wait a minute, what am I saying????????? Take my temp, baby, I'm either sick or certifiable.

Actually, the center section was a very pleasant knit. It made SENSE, and was easy to memorize once you figured out where the repeats go...the pattern is well written, and if you substitute a D for decrease, and an O for yarn over, and SKP for slip 1, knit 2 together, psso, you could shorten up the pattern by a page or two. In fact, to get the edging pattern on a single page, I rewrote it to follow exactly that--a K2 tog , yo, yo, k2 tog became an A, and doing it twice was a B. I was able to increase the font to 14, bold it, and STILL get it on one page. It was never memorizable (the edging), but I did get to a point about halfway through where I only had to look at the first few stitches on the pattern to know what came next...which made the repeats go a lot faster. The first 50 repeats took me up to 2 hours to complete. After that, only 1-1 1/2 hours to complete.

And that last repeat? Well, it went by so fast, I don't remember doing it. But by then it was mostly relief. My butt is sore from all the sitting this last weekend.

But it's finished. It really really is.

And I am exceedingly happy about that.

And to top it all off, it's a lovely day outside. People have commented about my project--and how wonderful it is (wait until they see it blocked!).

I'm planning to wear my outfit to work on the 22nd, and the shawl will complement it, of course. And I will have pictures taken--lots of them, with my wheel and my doggie, and with sheeps--though it would be better if I was feeding some free-range chickens, or even baby chicks--it's a wide open world.

I'm also thinking about going to the ceilidh at Alma--wearing my outfit--to see what people have to say. I'm pretty sure that I'll get LOTS of compliments on it. I am SO looking forward to the ceilidh!

So there you go. Pictures when I get home from my cellie--but I think I will go into the cafeteria at my breaktime to take pics with my camera, which will be much better than the pics from my cellie. So for now, it's a LATER!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

I can't Knit Another Stitch!

I only have 2 more points to go. I am so tired of knitting!!! I can't believe how close I am, and I don't want to continue! I WILL, because I have FORTITUDE.

Thank you so much to the person who turned me on to this shawl...and then moved away to California so she couldn't start it with me. You qualify as a rat! (Just kidding really!!)

I will however, be SO HAPPY when it's finished and blocked. I don't think my readers understand. Can you say "crossed eyes"? Can you say "the house needs cleaned--it looks like it hasn't had a woman's touch for almost 2 months!" Can you say "This kitchen STINKS! Do the dishes!"

I knew you could.

But it will have to wait one more day...while I finish this MONSTER that has consumed my every waking hour since the middle of MARCH. I believe I will call it "The March Monster".


Finally Sunday!

I have only 6 more points to do on the Civil War Shawl, and then I can kitchner and I'll be DONE!


As in, this project took me almost 2 months to finish, and when I've got it on the sheet to block, I will be SO HAPPY!

Not just because it's done, but because I can then start a new project, and I have several (beyond the one I posted a day or so ago). For instance, Monthly Dishcloths has a new cloth for May, and I need to get it knit up so that I can upload my picture--at the end of the year, there's a drawing for everyone who has knit the dishcloth. I have to start taking more visually stimulating pics for my uploads, too.

Then there's a top I'd like to work on--summer is coming fast and furious, and I'd like some knit or crochet tops--some cotton or linen sounds really good about now. Not that it's hot right at this moment, but the time is coming when I won't be able to work with wool, and something cooler and lighter will save my mind from exploding.

There's a bird at my feeder. Black on top, black head, white underside, cone beak (greyish), brown butt and tail feathers, with a BRIGHT RED splotch on his neck, just under his beak, that forms a V shape on his breast. It's a beautiful bird, and one I've never seen before in my life. I have no idea what sort of bird it is.

I've also got a ton of White Crested Sparrows at my feeders. I am not sure where this new sparrow came from--I grew up with barns, and so sparrows flew like common house mice--so familiar! But these Sparrows, new to me, and quite pretty are now the commoners of the species. They've only been around for a year or so. The Goldfinches have donned their new summer plumage. I seem to have several at a time, and then none at all. I'm guessing that they are nesting, but I am concerned that moths have gotten into the finchseed/thistleseed and ruined it. Then there's the Blue Jay that just stopped in. Beautiful bird, but noisy, and they toss the feed out of the feeder with their feet and large beaks--creating a mess, and leaving more feed on the ground for the chipmunk. Little birds hop by my bay window, taunting my cats, who are both sitting on the sill drooling. And now a bright red cardinal has stopped in. My! All the color this morning!

Hubby is going to the casino today with his mother and sister for Mother's Day, and I am staying home to knit to get this shawl done, done, done! I best get started, and I will--just as soon as I eat some breakfast.

Happy Mother's Day to all you mothers out there!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

For Those Who Need to Know

Addendum to my rant on Verizon

They approved a credit of $42 for the historical charges.

And that made me a happy camper. See? It doesn't take much! And my mother said I was difficult! Well, perhaps she wasn't prepared for what I would become--

Insert wicked laugh here

In the meanwhile--it rains cats and dogs outside, so the day proves an indoor one--no lawn mowing--no yard work--just knitting and tv.

I managed to get in 5 repeats in last night, and I have only 12 remaining, which means that indeed--it is possible to get this shawl done by tomorrow. I'm hoping the pattern for my market bag comes today so I can plan colors and buying yarn for a change. Since today is Saturday--and the mailman ignores me on Sundays--today is the absolute best day for mail to come, and I hope it arrives soon.

I drew the Ace of Cups for my card yesterday. It means a new love interest--hmm. Didn't need that! I need a new love interest like I need a hole in the head, but there you go!

Today, however, I drew the 9 of Pents-titled GAIN. Now this COULD mean monetary gain, but since today is a day off work--well you get the picture. I did get someone drop by yesterday offering to buy our fence panels--which we're asking $22 a panel, but the buyer didn't snap it up right away--perhaps she's considering the offer? Or it could mean that I shall maximize my work on the shawl and get it done today? Highly doubtful--it takes an hour to do one repeat, and I can't sit for 12 hours straight--and my eyes cross after 3 marathon hours--and I have other things planned for today. Like doing dishes and cleaning the kitchen--folding laundry--house stuff.

I might even clean out my snake cages, but can't seem to figure out what to do with the snake while I do it--it's not like I can put them in with each other--one will kill the other--and since the boa is so ding dong shy, I'm sure she'd be the one eaten. My Honduran Milksnake is very aggressive right now--having finally come out of hibernation.

Well on to knitting! Wish me luck!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Blackberry and Blues

I had to go in to Verizon again today to discuss why I didn't get a discount for being a State employee, so I'm standing here forever waiting for my turn in a very busy business. I always seem to take a long time here--they want to get all the information, of course. The bigger issue is that I've already paid for 2 months and I want credit for the discount for those months too! It's not that I don't deserve it, and it's frustrating to think that they might not give it to me.

And if they don't give it to me, they will get this phone back and I'll go back with Sprint--right after I throw a temper tantrum, cry and make an utter idiot out of myself.

And then I'll Twitter to everyone who will listen!

You see, I've had trouble with Verizon before--didn't get a bill for 2 months and they wanted payment in full. Well, I couldn't afford it at the time, and they wouldn't work out any sort of payment plan--so I got mad and left the phone there and walked across the street to Sprint. Then I paid them off $10 a month until they were paid in full, and I swore that I would never go back--

But then I got a broadband card--and its been pretty good so far--so I figured I'd take a chance on a new phone--so the very first bill--2 months worth of bill--hoy was I angry--but I'm trying to give them the benefit of the doubt only to find out that I'm not getting my discount!


On a good note, I ran into someone today that I haven't seen since I was in my teens! She remembered me, but I couldn't place her--when she told me who she was, I nearly fainted! Not only that, but she works for the state too--so I'll be able to catch up with her soon--and I can't wait for that! It was Ann Moritz from the Spirit of 76! I will finally be able to find out whatever happened to Rick Zalewski maybe--that might be a fun thing!

Tomorrow, I have an eye doctor appointment where they will dialate my eyes--I may not be able to knit! Oh, but I MUST if I am to finish the shawl by Sunday!

I came home to find the lilac bush flowering, and a ton of flowers on my property. I took some pictures for your viewing pleasure!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

3/4 Mile

I made it!

I have only 20 more points to do on the Civil War Shawl!
It's conceivable that...if I do 3 points Thursday, and 3 points Friday, then 7 points each on Saturday and Sunday (marathon knitting, friends!), I will be done with this project on Sunday night.


Well, I'm tired. How about you?

A New Joke

A friend of mine told me this one while driving to Detroit...

"What's the difference between Mick Jagger and a Scotsman?"

Don't know?

"Well, Mick Jagger says "Hey, you! Get off of my cloud!""

and a Scotsman says

"Hey, McLeod! Get off of my ewe!"

Nuff said. Alma is coming.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Okay Folks!

I just sneezed twice in a row, and got a sinus headache that made me STOP, drop my head, hold my nose, close my eyes and rest for a moment or two.

I'm thinking--oh sh*t, Swine Flu, right? (Let's hope not)

I did two more points today, still not quite to the 3/4 mile, but things are coming along handily. I had hoped to get three done today, but my eyes got bleary, and I thought perhaps I'd go to bed instead.

I think the work on the shawl is getting to my eyes. Friday, I'm headed to the opthamologist to have my eyes doctored--mostly to see if there's been any significant changes since my last visit a scant 5 years (yes, count em, 5) ago. Which was well before the diagnosis with Diabetes Type II, and was likely the indicator that should have alerted my doctors that I was DEVELOPING DTII--but sometimes, I think that these sorts of things escape doctors--perhaps it's why they call it "practice"?

The lilacs are beginning to bloom, and I've been thinking about Mom Draper this last couple of days. My lilac bush has a bazillion bunches of flowers on it this year, and it's going to be a font of color in a few more days. I will get a picture when it's at it's flowering height, so you can all see what a beautiful bush I have this year.

Maybe I'll take a pic of the spindly pine trees that my hubby left in my front yard??

Maybe not. At least not until he gets some flowers in and some bricks around to make a pretty flower bed underneath the pine tree--something annual that we can dig up every year....something like impatiens or petunias or even snapdragons! That would be so pretty. And a few moss rose...sigh...maybe some marigolds--my mother would swoon.

I've been giving some thought to pursuing a new activity once the shawl is done, but I'm not sure that I have the time, nor the drive to undertake it. I'm just not sure that I want to go there. Someday, I'll update you on the matter, but I'm trying to give it the thought it deserves--because it will mean a lot of time out of my life to pursue, and if it doesn't work out, it will be wasted, so I wouldn't want it to be taken lightly.

Sorry to be so "secretive", but there is a reason for that.

In the meantime, as always, werksabich, and I often wish I could retire, but I am neither close enough to retirement nor old enough for it, but my body sure thinks it should be time!

Not that I'm whining or anything, but I think I'm tired, and I think I'm going to go to bed early. Gnite.

A Note from my Blackberry

Well, my tire decided to get low periodically, so I dropped in to Discount Tire and find out that another tire is developing a bulge--so they are putting a used tire on so that I'm safe on the road--that would be a good thing, but I'm very late for work--thinking it would be a quick fix for the tire and back on the road--oh no!

It seems like everytime I come here, they want me to go home with a lot more than I came in for--and more out of my pocket--I really want my car to be safe--but I don't want a new set of 4 tires when all I need is to know why my passenger tire is losing air!

Its just frustrating.

But then when it was all said and done--there was no charge.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Monday Chill

It's chilly outdoors. I haven't set foot out there, but I'm indoors, and by the window, and I can tell that it's chilly out there.

Hubby and I spent most of the day cutting limbs down on several of our pine trees--and burning them. Little pine needle ash is EVERYWHERE, and I have a headache this morning from all the smoke. It was a long day, well, actually a long weekend, full of being busy--and I'm exhausted. Hubby needed a long shower before bed. He slept hard last night.

I didn't make the 3/4 mile on my shawl yesterday, but I'm quite a bit closer. I worked 6 points over the weekend, due to the extra tasks--and I'm getting to the point where I SERIOUSLY want to work on something else, and CAN'T because the shawl NEEDS to be done by Alma.

I REALLY hate deadlines.

So I slog along on it. I think I can start to relax, though. I only have 28 more points to do. When there are 20.5 points to do I will be at the 3/4 mile--so I really only have another 7 and I'm at the 3/4 mile. It was pretty silly of me to think I'd have reached that milestone by the end of the weekend! What was I thinking.

I took a ride with some friends yesterday to listen to a band practice. I had a good time. It was pretty exhausting, though. Long trip. I knit in the backseat of the car, and listened, watched and knit. Perfectly happy. The day was wonderful--perfect for enjoying a day in the park. I sigh just thinking about it.

I'd like to get back into drumming--I do miss it, especially around this time of year. I'm just not sure that I want to put myself through the torture--it can be ESPECIALLY STRESSFUL, and while on the road, you tend to eat BADLY. All the wrong stuff so that you can afford to stay at a hotel, rather than toss and turn on the ground, or to sleep in a leaky tent...I'll never forget the 4" of rain that fell in Kentucky that last trip. Holy COW!

I've ordered a pattern for a market bag, although I think I want to make it quite a bit differently. I love the colors, but hate the shape--so I'm hoping that there's a different shape--more square, afforded by the pattern. We'll see about it. In the meantime, I'll just plan on making a large rectangular one. This is going to be for my "Big Knitting Project" Bag. For things like shawls and sweaters that I'm working on--because I have found that the Civil War Shawl has outgrown the bag it's currently in, which is quite large, and lined as well. It's a great bag, but it's gotten to be too small for the project, and I would like to be able to move it to a bigger bag, but I don't have one!

And so the market bag...

Which I think is cooler than cool. I'm just a 60's sort of gal, I suppose.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Draw for 5/2/09

I drew a celtic spread this morning. This was not about myself, but about someone I once knew...
These are the cards:

Cover: 8 of Cups (Abandonment)
Cross: Knight of Swords (Change)
Above: Page of Swords Rev (Thought)
Below: 3 of Swords Rev (Discord)
Imm. Past: 10 of Swords (Disillusion)
Imm Future: 8 of Swords (Bondage)
Attitude: The Web Rev
Others: 3 of Pents Rev (Dedication)
Hopes: High Priestess
Tie up: The Lady

You've abandoned something again, seeking the change you constantly crave, without giving it much thought, and you've rushed headlong again, into something not having considered the consequences of your actions--as you always do. The constant disharmony in your life drives you, the displeasure in your past forces you to act, and you fail to see that it keeps you chained.

Your attitude is that the whole world owes you, and you can't seem to see why others can have things that you cannot seem to obtain for yourself, either by waiting or by force. You're hoping for change, and change will come, but in it's own good time--not yours.

And that's it.

The reading is for my ex-husband. My first thought when I pulled these cards was "oh, my gawd, look at all those SWORDS!!! He's entering into some real troubled times!


Perhaps his inability to change is holding him back? Yeah, that would likely be it. It's not surprising that my sig card, the High Priestess, is in his spread, too--it usually is.

So I have been working right along on the Civil War Shawl. I'm not yet to the 3/4 mile, but it's coming up in about 10 more points, I think. It's possible that I'll be there by the end of the weekend, unless I get sick...what with the Swine Flu running amok--I do have errands to run today, and so won't get as many points done today as I likely will tomorrow. We shall see.

So I am off to the races, having cleaned up the kitchen, gathered the trash and gotten things around to take to my mother's since I'm driving Miss Daisy to grocery shop today. Can't wait. I have a few things of my own to get--not alot, but enough to go.

Hubby was saying that he wanted to go back on the Atkins diet, and I told him NO. Unless he wants to fork in money to the grocery bill for all the meat, he wasn't going on Atkins. Besides which, Atkins isn't healthy for you. Your brain needs glucose to run on, and he basically stays on the 2 week diet forever, loses about 60 pounds then gains it back. I've been going right along, following (for the most part) my diet. I've lost 36 pounds so far, and still losing, and haven't gained any of it back yet. I've been on my diet for about 6 months or so. So you know that I will be able to maintain the weight loss when I'm done working on this. It's coming along. Losing slowly like this makes it easier to KEEP it off. I think it's just that you've learned to eat differently, but I could be wrong.

Hubby is going to his mother's to mow the lawn. The sun hasn't come out yet, so it's very likely that the grass will be too wet to do it. Our grass needs mowed too, and it's gotten pretty tall the last couple of days--due to all the rain we've had. It's cloudy today, too. Weatherman said we'd have a really nice weekend...well, go on then!

In the meantime, dreams come and go. I woke up this AM with lots of body aches. My nose has been itching on the outside, which means that I'm going to kiss a blue-eyed fool and a brown-eyed fool. It makes me wonder who the blue-eyed fool might be! HA!

I wonder what the day will bring--besides knitting and groceries?

My lilac bush is nearly about to blossom into a million little bunches of flowers. It's really packed this year. It reminds me of last year when mom Draper died. Sad time, that. I'll take a pic when it's blooming for memories. It's going to be a beautiful bush this year. I'm also talking to hubby about planting another crab-apple tree--one with pink blossoms on it, so that the birds will come closer to the house and nest--the trees have sprouted small leaves, and life is beginning again. Things are turning green everyplace you look. It's a time for growing. A time to be happy--sing, dance, party, share with others and generally have fun.

So I'm going to do just that, and maybe take my mother over to Grand Rapids to visit the Hobby Lobby, which sounds like fun to me--adding to my yarn stash and spending time with the Opinionated Crocheter. Hee! Later, dudes. I'm on my way!