Friday, January 30, 2015


Do I look older?  I thought so.

Birthday gifts included a gift card from DH for ebay.  I am finding it interesting, the items I am considering ~ since I am not spending "my" money on it.  Of course, it is all the same money, really, but I am enjoying picking and choosing.  All yarn so far, of course.  There is a topic on the knitting board about how a yarn stash is organized.  Mine is, plastic tubs, newest on top.  No other criteria, so if I want, say, bulky yarn, I must go through   a lot of bins to find it.  But that is OK with me, part of the reason I buy what I do is the feel of it, fuzzy or silky or whatever.

The temp outside today is 17 so far today, but there is a little blue sky trying to get through with a bit of sunshine.  I am in favor.  I think tomorrow is predicted to be warmer, we shall see.

My laptop MacBook has a shiny new battery, the old one just would not hold a charge more than 2 hours.  I think I have replaced it once already, but after all, the thing is 10 years old.  I upgraded the OS too, so it is running more smoothly and faster as well.    I could retreat to the desktop downstairs, but after a while I get claustrophobic down there, it is a tiny little room.  I would get a new MacBook if I could justify spending $1000+ for a shiny toy.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "My exercise routine consists of doing Diddly Squats."

I can EAR you...

Beans has the largest ears in our cat family, and she also has the most acute hearing, being able to hear a fly before we even know there is one.  Unfortunately, her pursuit of said fly involves leaps and bounds through a room, toppling everything in the line of travel.  She also has a phenomenal jumping ability and a penchant for the highest places in the house.  This makes it really difficult to find a place for something like a vase of flowers, a particular favorite.  Still, I wouldn't trade her for anything.

The weather here is snowy once again, and I am glad that DD canceled her planned trip from here today to Philadelphia, and back on Sunday; the weather forecast is for freezing rain all the way on Sunday.  And today hasn't been too travel-friendly either.  I think spring would be a better idea, but what do I know?  I'm just the mother.

We actually had the state come through with a plow earlier this week, exposing all the potholes.  I think they did it at the request of the trash pickup people, who slid in a ditch when they were here last week.  Still they were due on Tuesday and we haven't seen them yet.  The pickup last week was the first in 3 weeks.  That's a lot of trash.

The horses have been barn kept for 3 weeks now, the footing outside is just too bad, either very slick with mud from the rain, or packed snow slippery the other days.  I know they will buck and kick and run around when they are first turned out, and so the footing has to be good to prevent bad falls.  And at their age, any fall is a bad fall. Even the dogs have mostly been in the barn too, for much the same reason.  When they are outdoors the barn doors are left ajar, but raining, snowing, or any combination of weather they still won't go in the barn.  They curl up and sleep next to the fence where they can keep an eye on the neighborhood.  They will end up looking like a dog-shaped snow drifts, and still won't go in the barn.  I should say, they are Newfoundlands, so cold really doesn't faze them, provided they don't get wet.  They have an incredible double coat and a lot of oily hair, but they really don't do well when soaked to the skin.

I am starting new knitting projects, matching mittens, scarf and hat.  The mittens will be the most complicated, covered in a tuck stitch and with ribbing at the wrist.  If I have enough yarn of that color, I should say.  I really don't know what is the right amount of yardage to be needed, only that a small skein is not enough and a one pound skein is more than enough.  Still, it is a learning experience for me.  I just have a feeling that all my projects will be learning ones, the sum total of my experience being very small.

I have cookies in the oven, and the timer will go shortly, so I will leave you with a thought:  "Don't you wish some people would start using GLUE instead of lipstick?"

Sunday, January 18, 2015

A finished project

Here is the crib blanket I finished at last.  The center yellow square was to have "baby love" duplicate stitched in the center, but it looked really lame and I took it out.  I like the bold colors, which babies are said to respond to more than pastels.
Now to get it mailed out...

I can now start something new, without this hanging over my head.  What shall it be?  Dunno.

Thought for the day:  "You can't always control who walks into your life, but you can control which window you throw them out of."

Friday, January 16, 2015

In threes

Do bad things occur in threes?  I don't know, but ours has.
1. The washer
2. The Toyota Highlander
3. DH's tooth.

Yes,  my invincible husband was eating a piece of toast when his tooth broke off.  To the dentist the next day, and she found *two* teeth cracked off, and one cavity.  Crowns = $$$$

I slipped and fell trying to get in the car yesterday.  I wasn't hurt, other than a sore bum and a blow to my pride.  Not even my fragile knee.  The driveway was a solid sheet of glass.  I did get in the car, ran our errands, and while we were out we bought a tub of kitty litter and made a path across the driveway and up the steps.  I won't be going anywhere until the driveway thaws, probably Saturday.  We cannot use salt on this new driveway until it is a year old and sealed. 
Oh, a message to Dina:  the cards never arrived.  I think the postman has something against me, maybe our Christmas gift wasn't big enough?  I didn't get a card from my uncle either.  Hope they do better with checks.

The Knitters Paradise forum which I read has a topic asking everyone to share a photo of themselves.  Here is the one I posted~

Blondie, lived to the ripe old age of 27.  Still missed.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Consider this diem carped."

Sunday, January 11, 2015


I have found them!  The missing photos, that is.  This is my yarn stash, other than the odd skein or two: 

Bumper sticker for the day:  "You're never too old for naptime." (for some reason I can't get this to go to the bottom of the page)

This cabinet is an old chem lab one, surplussed when the labs were renovated, refinished and holding an enormous amount of stuff.  The bottom 8 drawers are full of yarn.  I started out with just the one plastic tub...

Friday, January 09, 2015

The Artful Detective

My DH is very fond of this Canadian series, shown here on the Ovation channel.  I bought the first 7 seasons for his Christmas gift, and he has been viewing them non-stop, I think, since then.  My only problem is the grating music at the beginning of every episode; it is like fingernails on a blackboard.  So I have retreated to another room and writing this.

The weather here continues to be frigid, but has warmed up somewhat from Wednesday.  It should be above freezing by Sunday, I hope.  Meanwhile we are *still* fighting the Invasion of the Stinkbugs.  How they can get inside when it is so cold outside and they are dormant during the cold?  I hate them.  They buzz around clumsily and, of course, stink. They make me creep.

The washing machine gave out last week and is still unrepaired, due to the terrible road conditions, but hopefully the repairman will come today.  It made a fast beep sound and flashed a dC code (meaning what?  It's a puzzle).  When I opened it, the load contained a small throw rug as well as other items, so I took the rug out and used the "spin only" to remove the water. BUT and it is a big but, the washer never stopped adding water.  We ran another load, and it filled the entire tub up in minutes. We dipped the 20+ gallons out of it, just before it would have overflowed, and shut off the water at the wall.  Sheesh!  I so don't want another flood.  We called the repair guy, but the road that has to be traveled has a steep uphill part.  Update:  the repairman came on Friday at last (tho the road was still bad), and the diagnosis is, get another washer.  This one needed $500 in parts, plus labor to repair.  We will put that toward a new machine.

  The Toyota Highlander broke down on Wednesday and is still unrepaired, and no diagnosis on what is wrong.  DH had gone to get R at work (because her car needs new tires to navigate in this snow) at 8 pm and couldn't get the car to restart, once it was shut off at the pharmacy, and it flashed all sorts of diagnosis codes.  Son C had to go pick them up, leaving the car in the CVS pharmacy parking lot for the tow truck to get to in the morning.  Then for some reason, god only knows why, they towed the car to Fairmont, about 20 miles away, to a Dodge dealer.  I remind you, this is a 2014 Toyota?  It took one entire day to locate the car and then bring it back.  When we finally got it back on Saturday from the local Toyota dealer, the only diagnosis was "bad battery".  This will make the third battery replacement since we got the car, new, 10 months ago.

So we have been stuck here without good wheels, and waiting for the washer repairman (and now the delivery of the new washer) to perhaps arrive.  I am getting cabin fever, but not bad enough to go out in this cold if I don't have to.  And of course, if the washer is repaired, there is all that accumulated laundry to do.  I can hardly wait.

I am working on organizing my yarn stash, which is growing as we speak, it seems.  So far I have it divided into solid colors and variegated ones, and then into chunky and light weights.  I need a craft room, which I won't get until the kid(s) move out.  Like that will ever happen.  It is true that the knitting machines use up yarn very quickly, but I need to move beyond hats, scarves, and baby blankets/afghans.  I sure could use another knitter familiar with these machines, but I can make do with youtube demonstrations if I have to.  I will post a photo or two once I get it all organized.  I regularly read a forum for knitters, Knitting Paradise, and there are a lot of people on it that can answer questions or give guidance, and I have posted several topics as I go along.  I just wish it could be face-to-face.

Thought for the day:  "My life is filled with wonder; I wonder where I parked the car, I wonder where I left my glasses....."

Sunday, January 04, 2015

Beginning the New Year

Here it is the 4th of January (just barely) and I am struggling to find a topic.  Guess I will wing it; nothing new there.

For New Year's Eve, DH and I split a tiny bottle of Martini Asti and crashed about 9 pm.  I can't remember the last time I stayed awake until midnight, but it has been a good long time.  Maybe when the kids were wee babies and I was up because they were ill.  The older I get the more sleep I need; I have read that seniors need less sleep as the age, which goes to show that I am not typical.

My friend H is now a grandmother, as of Dec. 21st.  I wish (sorta) that I was a grandmother too.  But then I stop to think, that if R had had a baby when she was, say, 20, that kid would now be 13.  A teenager.  And R was no fun at all at that age.  I used to say, I can handle anything because I took R through puberty.  Now I know that I can't handle everything, far from it.  So I believe I will not be worried about grandbabies and just admire the YouTube videos of, for example, baby tasting a pickle for the first time.  So I am a vicarious grandma, and that has its own benefits.

The Christmas stuff is all back in the attic and I have been cleaning/straightening the house.  We recyle cardboard and boy, there was a lot of that to break down.  I still need to vacuum, a chore I completely detest, and it shows I am afraid.  Maybe I can con R into helping me later today.

We saw the neatest bird at the bird feeders.  It was a Cooper's hawk, I think:
They are known to feed on sparrows and wrens, so when he arrived on the fence next to the feeders, everyone else split.  He stood there for a good long time, then took off in a wide climbing flight.  So nice to see one that close.  I have seen them perched in a tree a time or two while riding, but looking at one above you, versus one level with the window is a new thing for me.  A few days ago I saw what I thought was an owl being chased by 4 or 5 ravens, but now I wonder if that was the hawk also.  Although I thought that was a bigger bird.  I will have to keep a closer eye on the feeders and the area surrounding them.

Time to turn back into bed.  Bumper sticker for the day:  "Does running late count as exercise?"