Saturday, June 30, 2007

No blankie update again this week. Hey wait - yes there is!

I have been feeling pretty guilty over the past couple of several weeks about not working on the mitred square blankie. I love the blankie. The colors, good. The super easy pattern, good. The fact that it is made from leftovers, good. The bad part? It is summer in southern New Jersey. What does that mean? Well, yes, bad hair days, but WHY do we have all bad hair days? Heat and humidity. Put a big old mostly-wool blanket on your lap and try and knit - not good.

So anyway, while I have been berating myself for being a no-good, fair-weather blankie knitter, I realized that, hey, I've been working on a blankie after all! Remember the Rebuilding Greensburg project I found out about from reading Criquette's blog? It is for squares to be assembled into blankets! Mom and I have been knitting away. This is my pile so far.

Yes, there are a lot of ends to be woven in, but that is my most favorite thing to do in all the world so I am saving the best for last. [That last sentence was dripping with sarcasm, in case you couldn't tell.]

Thursday, June 28, 2007

My Secret Pal Rocks!

No posts for a week, and then two in one day - what's up with that? I'll tell you what's up...I got my Secret Pal 10 package today. My SP10 pal Eve spoiled me! She sent so many things, I don't know how she got them all to fit in one box. Lots of Yankee Candle goodness; a housewarmer and tealights with a glass holder in "Sweet Honeysuckle", a pottery crock with 6 samplers in various fruity and flowery scents (Mmmmm); Bath & Body Works soaps; a notepad & magnet; sweet little felt sheepies that match the notecard (can you see them in the picture below?); Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn (Oh so soft and squishy); the all-important chocolate and jelly beans; and last but not least, Greenies for Emma and Tara. How nice is that? She included goodies for my babies! Thank you, Eve!

Here is a shot of everything. How did that all fit in one box?

This is Emma. I opened the Greenies and was reading the packaging when she came over to investigate! She says "I don't know what they are, but I want them!"

This is Tara. She says "Eve is the best Secret Pal ever."
Well, Tara, I have to agree with you. Eve is the best. Thanks so much for everything!

Two Days Off Work!

My sister and I took two days off work this week, and boy did we ever need the break. The past several weeks (months?) have been busy, busy, busy. Almost every weekend has been full with necessary stuff - no time for fun stuff. That's what life is, I guess, but every now and then it's good to take some time and do something just for the fun of it. Yesterday we went to Lancaster, PA with Mom and Dad. We had a great time shopping, riding around, and eating at our favorite restaurant. I just love them so much. They are truly the best parents in the world. I meant to take some pictures of the squares Mom and I were working on for the Rebuilding Greensburg project, but I forgot. I did get some more yarn, though, and we're having fun making the blocks.

Today we're just going to run errands, but it is so nice to be able to browse around in the stores a bit instead of hurry-hurry-hurry because there is so much to do. I'm going to take my final Secret Pal 10 package to the post office today. This was my first time joining a secret pal swap, and I will definitely sign up again. I haven't blogged about the packages I have put together for my pal, just in case she should stumble upon my blog. Here are Emma and Tara inspecting the final package, which will reveal my identity to my pal.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

A New (to me) Meme!

Tsuki of Tsuki's World tagged me with this birthday meme.

The rules: Go to Wikipedia and type in your birthday month and day only. Then post 3 events, 2 births and one holiday that occurred on your birthday, then tag 5 friends. Tsuki added the reasons she picked the items, so I did, too.

My birthday is May 12

1780 - American Revolutionary War: Charleston, South Carolina is taken by British forces (if the brits prevailed, we'd all be speaking with really cool accents!)
1937 - Coronation of King George VI of Britain at Westminster Abbey (where they all spoke with really cool accents)
2000 - The Tate Modern art gallery opens in London. (again, just for the accent thing)

1820 - Florence Nightingale (the accent)
1955 - Kix Brooks (of Brooks and Dunn fame)

National Limerick Day (because who doesn't like a good limerick?)

My 5 tagees are: Noricum, Criquette, Shelly, Stephanie, and Shelby. No pressure, though. Since this is the first time I have seen this meme, and it was kind of fun, I don't feel too bad about tagging you all, but if you don't want to do it, that's OK too.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Cute Babies!

My nieces have baby Guinea Hens. They are just three days old. Have you ever seen Guinea Hen chicks? They are the sweetest little things.

Here is an extreme close-up.

But they can't all be hens--there would be no babies. I have never heard of a Guinea rooster, though. There is probably an official name for the different sexes, but I'm too tired to google it and find out. In exchange for my lack of information in this post, knitting or otherwise, here's another gratuitous cute baby picture.

Now, I know Emma and Tara might not be considered to be babies in the strictest, traditional, anal-retentive interpretation of the word, but they're MY babies. Oh, and if you are reading this mom and dad, yes, they ARE your grandchildren! They love you very much (and so do I)!

Friday, June 15, 2007

Happy Father's Day

It is said that girls look for their fathers in a husband. I have been blessed with the best man in the world for a father, which is why, I suppose, no one else has ever been able to come close to my ideal. How can a mere mortal compete with the steadfast support and unconditional love that I receive from my rock?

1964-ish: I'm sure this is the last thing he felt like doing after a long day at work.

1968-ish: This is at the annual Sunday School picnic. I have no idea what I'm telling him here, but from the looks of it, it was very important.

1986, my college graduation. This was a very bad time in my life, but a hug from daddy could always make everything a little more...OK. It still does.
Happy Father's Day, dad. I love you more than words can say.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Update Friday

I have been trying to post about the Mitred Square Blankie on Fridays, but it's just too darn hot to knit on the thing. But I DO have an update today. Remember Zoey? My sister and I sprung her out of the pokey and transported her to her ABR foster family. Sweet face, lovely personality, free with her kisses...and all-around good little girl. Her foster mom is going to keep her.

It gives you a warm fuzzy feeling, knowing another lost soul found a forever family, doesn't it?

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Knitting for Kansas

I am a faithful reader of Criquette's blog, and she is having a contest for a good cause. It turns out that over at Sugar Bunny Boulevard, a very nice blogger and knitter is collecting 8" bias-knit (or crocheted) squares which will be assembled into afghans for the families in Greensburg, KS whose lives have been disrupted (to say the very least) by tornados. Click on Sugar Bunny's link, and all of the information is right there on her sidebar. Criquette is giving away some lovely merino yarn to two lucky knitters who send squares to Sugar Bunny for the afghans.

The yarn of choice is worsted weight, wool or wool-blend, so you know what that trip! All I have is sock yarn, or baby yarn, so I though I would find something from the new needlework shop that hosted WWKIP day last weekend, but they don't carry any yarn...yet. So, a trip to Michael's yielded this:

Ooooh, pretty. I started (and almost finished) my first square last night while watching The Deadliest Catch. Yes, vegetarian that I am, I enjoy witnessing thousands of little crabby lives being lost each week on the television show. Hey, I was pinched by one of those suckers once, and it hurt, so it's kind of like getting revenge -- a naughty pleasure.

Speaking of naughty, take a look at who has been hanging around by the back gate, in full view of the dogs if they should happen to look out the back door:

Yes, that's Joey, sitting there and staring in the house until you bring him some food.

That little manipulator is now getting three cans of food a day. Three. I think that's a little excessive, but he insists. If Emma sees him, she stands still as a statue at the door and "wills" him to go away. Not Tara. She will stand there and howl like some unearthly creature. I have never heard sounds like that come from a dog. It's a cross between a beagle, an amorous cat, and the devil. It's kind of like OOOOWWWWW, EEEEEOOOOOWWWW, OOOOOOO, OOOOOOO, OOOOWWWWW. Joey just sits there and looks at Tara like she has lost her mind.

Take a look at these visitors to the museum this afternoon:

Sorry guys, tickets required to enter here. Astute blog readers, who have really good eyesight, are glass geeks, and are familiar with the glass made in Vineland, New Jersey between 1924 and 1931 will notice the display of Durand Art Glass in the window. Anybody? Anybody? I didn't think so.

These ducks, and others like them, have been residents here for many years. They are a cross between a Muscovy and who knows what else. Here are a few quotes from Wikipedia:

  • This species, like the Mallard, does not form stable pairs, and will mate with related birds.
  • When Muscovies mate with other species of ducks the offspring are called mules.
  • Muscovies will mate in the water or on land.

Does that make these ducks sound like the sluts of the bird world, or what?

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Happy World Wide Knit in Public Day!!!

Yes, there is such a thing as World Wide Knit in Public day. What's more, there was a gathering in a town not far from where I live. I got to meet some very nice knitters & crocheters, and found a lovely little shop. I've got to tell you I was a little nervous before going. I'm not good in groups, or with new people. Plus the name of the store -- O'Daleys -- sounded kind of like a bar. I had a strict Baptist upbringing, and the closest thing to alcohol in our house was cough syrup. I've never been in a bar, unless you count the time when I was 5 years old and my Grandmom & Uncle Rich took me to the seashore with them, and we went into a bar and my grandmother let me have a sip of her beer. I remember telling my mother about the pretty colorful windows in the bathroom. Looking back I'm sure it was that cheezy plastic coating they glued to the windows, but, hey, I was five and had never seen colorful windows. Anyway, boy was my mother pissed. I never went back to the seashore with just my Grandmom & Uncle....
But I digress. Here is a shot of (the not at all bar-like) O'Daleys. It was a nice little store with sewing things for sale, and some gift items. I overheard the owner talking to another customer about adding yarn to her inventory - YAY!
And just a few doors down was a little gazebo that they filled with comfy chairs and everything. It is just to the left of this sign, but I didn't want to take a picture of it with the knitters because I hate (really and truly HATE) having my picture taken and I wouldn't want to make the other knitters feel uncomfortable.

A good time was had by all (and no alcohol was consumed, mom). After that I got to crawl around on Dad's garage floor (which is cleaner than my kitchen floor). We were threading some wires under my sister's car from the battery back to the trailer hitch to operate an electric winch (very different from an electric wench). Don't ask.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

A Ride on the Brittany Transport

No knitting content for today, but to make up for it, I would like you to meet Zoey. She is a very sweet girl, and has had a hard time of it recently. Her family took her to the county shelter this week, because their neighbor was complaining that she was barking all the time. Well, she was an inside dog until two months ago, when her family decided to make her an outside dog. Poor Zoey, how was she to understand? I'd be barking all the time too if I was left outside 24-7.

Anyway, I got a call from one of the New Jersey coordinators for American Brittany Rescue (a great organization...really, really fabulous), asking if we could spring Zoey from jail. My sister S and I picked her up at a shelter this morning and drove her to meet her foster Mom. I am so grateful to foster moms and dads out there. I don't know how you do what you do. I fell in love with this little girl in the hour she was in the car with me. She snuggled up to me, laid her head on my shoulder, and I was in love. It is so hard to give these dogs up after a short car ride, let alone after fostering them for weeks or months. It made it a little easier giving Zoey to her foster mom, because I really think she will be Zoey's forever mom. She brought brought her two teenagers with her to meet Zoey, and everyone fell in love instantly. Zoey jumped right into their car without even a backward glance at me. And here I thought we had something special...

I leave you with these:

Ahhh, Zoey. Our time together was fleeting, but I'm glad to have had you in my life for even a little while. (Is that sappy, or what?)