Sunday, November 29, 2009

3 Weekends and a Monkey

Ok, there's no monkey, but monkeys always cheer me up. It's been a series of tiring weekends, though.

1st weekend I drove 3 hours North East to move my brother to a new town, job and situation. It's a good move for him and I'm happy for him. Of course the kiddos were sad and they cried for 30 minutes on the way home. On that Saturday, I learned that one of my favorite people was in the hospital and not doing well. The town he and his wife live in is probably 2 1/2 hours South of where I was and then another 3 hours home. So I decided to make the trip the next weekend.

The 2nd weekend came around, and we (the kids and I again) drove the 3 hours East to go see this favorite person of mine, who is by this time, in hospice. Yeah, totally not good. So we, my best friend and I go see my person. It was really sad, because he hardly resembled himself, but I talked to him and joked with him for a while. His mind and humor were completely intact, in spite of how tired he was. His room was full of family, some I knew and some I didn't. I'm not related to him but one of his daughters was married to someone I've known since I was a kid, who later became part of my step-family. (but that's a side point) The way he became one of my favorite people is a sweet story, though. When I was about 20/21 or so, my other best friend and I were looking for a place to rent together. We had always planned to be room-mates. Well, somehow we heard that someone in our congregation had a little trailer on their place and they might consider renting it out. I say little, but really it was pretty roomy for two girls with hardly any stuff. 3 bedrooms and 1 1/2 bath. It was the wife, who was in our congregation, and her husband wasn't so we didn't know him. In spite of that, we did all our dealing with him and I don't really know what it was about him that both of us fell in love with (not in a gross way, b/c he is older than both of our dads) but he had this mischievous twinkle in his eyes and such a cute funny smile. Anyway, after talking to him a while and looking at how much work we would have to do to the place, he gave us the price he thought fair. To be totally honest, we thought it was fair, too, but we still needed to think about it and talk about before we'd give him a certain 'yes' or 'no' answer. I think we were about to get in the car to go, and he chased us down and said he'd forgotten about some certain little detail and said he would rent it to us for THIS amount instead of the one we had talked about just a few minutes ago. We didn't quite understand how his calculations came down after he remembered that, because it would actually have added to the cost, but come down it did, and we totally jumped on it, in case he might come to his senses and change his mind. I think though, that he fell in love with us, too, and that he just wanted to rent it to us. It was such a sweet deal, I'm almost embarrassed, thinking back, at how cheap it really was. We fixed up that trailer like mad, we painted it all kinds of crazy colors and loved it with all our hearts. He took really good care of us, if anything was the slightest bit broken, he noticed it and fixed it before we ever knew about it. We really loved living there and getting to know him and we had such fun teasing him and joking around with him. He even named a cow for each of us! LOL - that was a privilege reserved for his grandkids, and nieces and nephews, and it was a very serious business in their family, because if anyone got left out, well, they were VERY upset over it. At that time (and I know this paragraph is waxing on past the realms of grammar's rules, but bear with me, it's a weekend theme) my best friend and I were both full time ministers, basically like domestic missionaries - which means we tried to spend 90 hours a month going out knocking on doors trying to encourage people and doing bible studies with those who wanted them. I already mentioned, he wasn't in the habit of coming to our congregation, but his wife had been a member a long time. Well, my best friend and I had parts in the meetings sometimes, and we'd beg him to come see. And of course he'd fit spit (figuratively) and be cantankerous and give us trouble. However, we eventually softened him up and got him to come here and there. Then we'd have parts at bigger Assemblies and then we'd really lay on the sugar and spice and everything nice to get him to come to see those parts, because they really are few and far between. And he came and listened. Well, longer story a little less long. We both at different times found ourselves called away from there, but he kept on going to the meetings and assemblies and eventually he came on into the congregation. I'm not saying it was because of us, but I know we helped him along part of the way. So all in all, he's a really special guy for us - for me, and I really love him and his family. --- So back to the present. I saw him Saturday for about an hour and a half or so, and he was really needing some rest. His family, all but two, had been filtering out during that time, and were coming back in the morning. So at the end of our visit it was me, my other best friend, and him, his wife and one of his daughters (and a tiny little dog she takes with her everywhere, cute cute thing) Well, I thought he needed some sleep, so I kissed him on the head and told him goodbye. Somewhere between 11 and 12:30 that night, he passed away, so I had just gotten there in the nick of time. It was really really sad, but I was very VERY glad to have seen him and spoken to him one last time.

The 3rd weekend rolls around and we drive back, to attend his memorial service, which was Friday. It was really a nice service, and I spoke some more with his wife and daughters and spent the weekend just unwinding with my best friend. (not the one from the story above, my other one) I didn't mention in the 2nd weekend's story, though, that this best friend and her family are moving to another state VERY soon, so I'm sad and happy about that, as well. Sad for me, and happy for them. They really need a change, too, and I'm glad they are able to make one happen.

So that's the last three weekends, summed up, there's a little more, to the 3rd weekend than what's written that's I'm leaving out - suffice it to say when it rains it pours and I cry

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Cleverness Escapes Me

It's been a whole month since I posted anything, mainly because nothing has really been going on. I've been reading lots. I decided to read the collective works of the Brontë sisters. I think the only book I don't have yet (not sure) is the book of poetry that they collaborated to write under their pseudonyms Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell. Well, they used those names for all their books. So far I have really enjoyed the reading. The only problem is having a very limited knowledge of French, since Charlotte interjects entire conversations in French quite without warning throughout all of her novels. This is only an issue when I'm reading away from the Internet and my awesome find of an online translator.

In addition to collecting all the Brontë novels, I also grabbed up all the L M Montgomery and Laura Ingalls Wilder works as well. A person needs a little light reading between Brontës. These last two collections are for my daughter's library - eventually. The plan is that we read them together, a chapter or two before bedtime a couple times a week.

It's cold this week, so my fancy may be turning towards knitting soon, hopefully. I guess I shouldn't let it bother me when I'm not in the mood to knit - I only hit a serious lull every couple of years. I haven't done this much reading in a long time, so.... it's a trade off. We all go through lulls, ebbs and waves of activity and moods. Dips and swells of life and changes. We easily get caught up in the processing part of the changes which can be counterproductive. Our feelings aren't always a result of what we think, but of what we do. Actions really do speak louder than words. I'm not really heading towards any profound point, just something I wanted to tell myself, I guess. =)

If this all sounds a little odd, it's because I'm trying to think and type through a thinly veiled migraine. Anyway, the idea is in there, it just isn't being communicated so clearly. I think I'll just eat my pot pie, now - mmmmmm

Who is your favorite author?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Of Airplanes and Minnesota

So, I didn't get the sweater finished in time for my trip to Minnesota, but that's ok since I didn't have room for much in my carry on. My youngest sister and I had a great time, it's our first trip together! It was a beautiful little adventure, the leaves were perfect shades of Autumn. I didn't get many pictures, because my camera was on the fritz. Bad timing, right? Plus we were on the go most of the time, but not so much that we were rushing here and there. A perfect little mini-break on the whole.

The wedding was beyond elegance itself and one of the most fun I've ever attended. Several of the women in the groom's family are candy makers and darn good ones. The center pieces were all edible pretzels dipped in chocolate or white chocolate lollipops shaped like tulips and roses and pretty things like that. There were also home-made cherry cordials and the punch was really great. One of their friends works at Starbucks and saved up all their employee discount coffee and donated it to the reception. Vunderbar!

Our return flight(s) were hilarious. One of our other sisters acquired some buddy passes on one of the airlines, so we had free tickets, even if that means the lowest of the low standby. Our flights to Minnesota hardly seemed standby at all. We boarded both flights just fine. The return trip was very different. We were bumped so many times, I sorta lost count. It was rather hilarious, actually. It's not like we were going to complain, right? Our tickets were FREE, so we rolled with the punches, enjoyed our time in our connecting cities of Chicago and St. Louis and routed ourselves round about to Dallas via Houston. You see, getting to Dallas directly from Chicago or St. Louis on a Monday is next to impossible when you are so low on the totem pole, but Houston is a much less popular destination. Houston to Dallas our flight only had 32 people on it, so we all spread out. All and all, our airports experience on Monday started about 6:30ish, since we arrived in plenty of time for our first scheduled flight that was to depart at 8:15. By the time we made it to Dallas, it was past 9 pm! We laughed at ourselves and our predicament all day. On the very last flight, from Houston to Dallas, I ordered myself a Scotch. The flight attendant asked, "On the rocks?" and I replied, "No rocks, please." "Straight up?!" "Yes, it's been a very long day." "Yeah, I can tell, you deserve it! hahaha"

and I verily did.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Autumn in Texas

OH, it's wonderfully chilly today. It's been an actual Autumn here for the first time in many a year. We actually had a cool day on the first day of Fall, and it's turned dow
n right windy and rainy and cold. This means I actually feel like knitting for real. I think I'll break out my sweater and finish it so I'll have something warm and new to wear when I go to Minnesota next week. (that is if plans pan out the way they are laid for now) I have a cousin getting married next week and I'm hoping to go. I guess that means I'd better get to work on it.

Thanks to all of you who commented on my last post/rant, I appreciate your support and encouragement. I may take some of it down at some point, depending on how I feel about it.

It just so happens, knit-wise, that I have accomplished something. My niece walked up to me and said, "Will you make me a poepoe hat?" and how could I say no? So I made a poepoe hat with a pink ball and have a very happy niece to show for it.

I haven't finished the socks I started way back when, but I'm sure I will after the sweater is done. I guess I have a tiny little snag getting to the next step since I haven't done a gusset heel in this direction. It's just a matter of getting the book out and following the directions. When I am in the mood to read and knit, instead of reading OR knitting, I'll get to it. =)

Hopefully I'll have some more to show next post, and hopefully it'll be pretty soon. Things are on the upswing, here at home. It gets a little better every day in some small way. Slow progress is better than the quick stuff, I think, it has more of a lasting quality. What's the saying? Slow and steady wins the race and you can put that in your pipe and smoke it. (for the record, I don't think smoking is a good idea, I just sorta like the irony of that expression)

eta: btw I taught another person to knit today - don't know how many that makes now, but it's getting to be up close to 10 or so - yippee ky yaaay

Monday, September 28, 2009

Some People Just Don't Get It

Why is that, do you think? You can explain and explain one point, repeatedly, from every angle you can think of, as gently and dipomatically as you can, but it doesn't matter. They say they understand, but in a few days or weeks there they are, asking you the same question that you have tearfully, tediously, tormentedly and totally layed out before them in every manner thinkable.

How does that happen? I really don't know. The only thing I can think of, is that the answer given is not what said questioner wants to hear, so it cannot be accepted. This may be the case. This may not. It does puzzle me greatly as how to answer, yet again, the same question. The only thing I can think of at this point is not to answer at all. This goes against every fiber of my being, since I like to provide a sensible reason for any part of my behavior.

Not that every behavior I have behaved makes sense, hardly. I've done some stupid crap. In fact, it's the ceasing of the stupid crap I did that seems to be unexplicable. Negative behaviors stopped, explained, re-explained and reformed, this cannot seem to be accepted.

It's vague, I know, I think most of you have an idea, since I've hinted at it previously that while I was separated from my husband (though we co-existed in the same house) that I had another interest in play. It really seemed like a good idea at the time, it seemed all perfect and seemed to answer all my longed for needs and wishes. It seemed to be lots of things it wasn't - that's what they call "love heroine". It's that initial rush of feeling that washes over you so strongly that it can barely be resisted. I will say this - the feelings were real, they were substantial, they were lots of things. However, there were obstacles, as well. Gigantic, hulking, mountain ranges of obstacles. These obstacles were promised to be fixed, of course, that's how the brain works, or rather, ceases to work whilst in the grips of "love heroine". None of these obstacles were got over. They were the types of things I had no control over, only to be controlled by their owner.

These things were big enough that I knew, until they were fixed, my children could never be in the presence of that person. I couldn't expose them to those sorts of things. Why was it okay to expose me to those sorts of things? I don't have a good answer to that question, other than, I thought that eventually it would be ok. It wasn't.

Still, I was expected to accept and commit to completely, before the obstacles had been removed. They were, in fact, getting worse, and I had to finally draw the conclusion that though it was a beautiful fantasy, that's all it was. There would never be 'employment'. There would never be 'free of addiction'. There could never be 'respect for my faith without criticism'. The list of the ways and circumstances needed for a stable family that could/would never be were pretty much endless.

It wasn't to be, and I had to make a desicion, to find my way back to self-respect and for me, repentance. I found it, I did what I had to do to get myself back to myself, and to my faith. This was the basis of my decision. It had nothing to do with anyone else, nothing to do with any other interest, there was none. Absolutely none.

In fact, my decsion to try again, once I was asked to do so by my husband, was some length of time later. The two things had absolutely no bearing on each other. The fact of the matter is, that had my husband and I gone through with our divorce, I would STILL be single right now. I would STILL not be with that other person or anyone else for that matter. PERIOD

So I said I wouldn't explain it, and there I did again. The thing is, I know that most of you will understand this, and whether I sink in your opinion because of being candid about this.... I get it. I sank in my own opinion for a while, too.

That's the thing. RIGHT there. No one who loves you more than they love themselves will sink you in your own opinion. It's harsh, I admit, but that's how I feel about the perspective I have gained from my own experiences.

If it could have just been let go, back when I said, "Let go, please." I would have memories to look back on with a tast of bitter-sweet. Unfortunately, it's starting to just be bitter now, exhausting, repellant and sad. So once again I say, why is this so difficult to understand?

It's a rare occurance, apparently that this person reads this blog, any more. But on the offchance... here it is, yet one more public explanation that can be referrenced for the future to posterity and beyond. I refuse to speak of this again, by any means available. If my phone rings it will not be answered. If a message is left, it will be deleted before it reaches my ears. If a letter is sent, it will be shredded. If an email is received, it will go in the trash and then erased.

So, yes, NOTHING was the accusation and NOTHING is what you get, and NOTHING is what I want and if NOTHING is what you want to be, than so beit, it has NOTHING to do with me. NOTHING to times indefinite, even forever.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Just So You Know =)

I haven't abandoned blogging. I'm doing well, it's just the beginning of the school year and we are all adjusting to a new schedule. I'm doing an absurd amount of cleaning and absolutely no knitting. My job is awesome, not because of how many people I see, but because of the change and relief that can be affected with Massage Therapy. I love it. =)

I have been taking pictures, growing lots of okra, one eggplant and a few very bitter cucumbers along with two small watermelons. On the whole the garden is a spectacular failure, but it's ok, because I'll do better next year. I have successfully grown some very tall grass though, which verily needs chopped down. 

Oh, yeah, also lots of reading and photography and boring stuff that doesn't much lend to blogging. 

We've had several gorgeous sunsets lately that are pretty enough to share, but I'm experiencing technical difficulties. I had to change my admin password because I forgot some complicated caps no caps something or other and now my 'keychain' password is giving me grief. SO, I'll figure that out when I'm less tired. 

I'll be teaching someone to knit Saturday, if I feel better (been a little fluish) so I should have something to show soon enough. ttyl

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Finished Baby Blanket!

My brother finished the baby blanket yesterday, washed and laid it out to dry. Here is the finished product.

His friends as it turned out, kept him too busy to finish it when he went to visit them. He did get to show it to them. He laid it out on their carpet when she was out of the room, and when she came back in, she started squealing =) perfect reaction! 

Bask ye in it's awesomeness =) my bro rocks!!

eta - oh yeah, we have hatchlings!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Time to Admit Something...

... to myself. 

Once upon a time, there was a blog that was popular. Lots of people read it and lots of people commented. Then the writer of that blog started having issues with lots of stuff and the blog sorta went by the wayside, got deleted, started over, transferred to another blog address, was nearly abandoned and well, the list carries on for sometime. 

It thus became time for the blog writer to admit, that the blog was no longer for all the masses, but for a few loyal, close blogland people who never stopped reading the blog and supporting the writer of the blog through all the ups and downs that had come before. (now THAT'S a run-on sentence) 

Of course the blog, as all blogs, also serves the purpose of record keeping, like any journal, of the accomplishments, knitterly and otherwise, and the aforementioned ups and downs of life in general. 

Once the blog writer admitted this to herself, she realized that the pressure was off and she could relax. Loyal is loyal and those who fit that description were more precious to her then the fleeting popularity she had once experienced. 

the end

=) Love y'all!

This is pretty huge for a dishcloth, I think I'll try sizing it down a bit for the next one. It's a really fun knit, though, and a very forgiving pattern. I made a few mistakes here and there and it didn't seem to matter too much. I've been using the blue one a bunch and it's really cool. Can't wait to throw away all the much hated ones I have. Thanks for the suggestions, Chris! =)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Oh the Irony

As I am knitting this:

I notice this:

Time to get the yarn to remake this sweater 
Man I hope I can make it rock like the old one does

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Yarn Speaks for Itself

Minnesotan Acquisitions

Malbrigo for my Brother - and yes he totally flipped
it was perfect


Friday, August 14, 2009

Vacations are GOOD!

We have had a nice leisurely time here in Minnesota and it's been wonderful. Seeing my cousin and her family along with her sweet baby boy. We had a nice "Girl's Day" yesterday, left all the kids with the guys and ran around doing errands and stuff. I finished my second dishcloth and was out of yarn (because of all things, that's what I forgot to pack) so I just HAD to go yarn shopping =) I got 3 gorgeous skeins of cotton, and 4 skeins of  MALBRIGO in two colors. 2 of the skeins I'm gifting to my brother for house-sitting for us. He's gonna flip over it. It was my first time petting that stuff and somehow I couldn't walk away from it.

Here are my two finished dishcloths.

 On the second one I used nearly every bit of the yarn. Talk about cutting it close! That's the cast off edge - YIKES =)

I can't wait to show you my new stuff, it's SO pretty. AND I won't run out of yarn on the way home. We leave tomorrow morning for the long long drive back. Sometimes I wish there wasn't quite so many miles between my extended family and myself. We'll probably go to the lake today, hopefully before it starts cooling off again. Stay tuned for yarn pics, I may add them to this post later, who knows? =)

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Wake Me Up Before We GO GO

Garter stitch and dishcloth cotton have rescued me from my knitting slump. 

and the coffee is good

I think I'll be knitting lots of dishcloths for a while, it's about all I can focus on these days. Focus, something I don't have at the moment because I was up WAY too late last night, which is bad because:

We are headed off on vacation this weekend and I have yet to pack a single thing. YAWN. Maybe if I take a nap I can get going? Probably better to get going first and do some stuff till I get so tired I fall asleep in the dishwater.

Which brings me back to the dishcloths. I have tons of dishcloth cotton, and been meaning to replace the annoying ones I've been using. I'll probably do a few garter stitch ones and then branch out to fun stuff.

What are some of your favorite dishcloth patterns?

Friday, July 31, 2009

A Couple More Pics

Been working super hard this week, in spite of a migraine that started Saturday and didn't give up till Wednesday. Of course I have to thank my Excedrine for the ability to function. I guess what I'm really saying is that I don't have much interesting blog fodder. 

The only exception to that is that I may get to be co-workers with one of my fav classmates, which I may or may not have set up =)

Anyway, to keep all 2 or 3 of you reading, here are a couple more pics from the other day. I was all mesmerized by the water and the sunlight. 

Too bad I didn't take some pics from the other side and catch all the rainbows, maybe next time I go there I'll remember that. Not that we've had much sun lately, and I'm not complaining. Getting rain at this time of year is awesome, cuts the heat in half and it does my okra good =) 

Maybe I'll be a good girl and show you the hilarious state of my garden next time. For now, it's back to Speed Racer, the movie. Which I have to sheepishly admit, I'm really loving for all it's psychedelic charm. 

See y'all in the funny papers

Saturday, July 25, 2009

My Graduation

Friday, the 24th of July, was my graduation ceremony. It was really pretty fun to see most of my classmates again. The ceremony was pretty long, since all the classes that finished between May and July graduated that night. There were about 7 different programs with several classes each. Professional Massage Therapy went first, since we had the most (I guess) and we were put in line alphabetically according to our first names, which means, aside from the Valedictorian, I was first. 

I came just a few points away from being Valedictorian, but I'm very thankful I wasn't, because I really wasn't in the mood for doing my lame speech in front of all those people. I was first for quite a while, so I was really scared, but fortunately someone else was more anal about their grades than I was =)

We have our Convention this weekend, too, so the whole family had already been sitting all day by the time we had the graduation. It was a long, but good day =)

Sorry about the glare on this pic, but it's a picture of a picture. That's what took the longest time, we had to get the pictures right then, apparently. It was about another hour standing in line to order and pick them up.

Here are some pictures from the Convention today. Well, we are at lunch in these pictures. 

Being Cute

Being Silly

Being Artsy

still loving my new computer btw, especially since it has wireless internet - ah freedom =)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Happy Wednesday to Me

Guess what? The husband was acting oddly as he was coming in this evening and as I looked around the corner he was holding a surprise for me.

I can barely even believe it myself, but I am the giddy new owner of a MacBookPro! DUDES! Do you have any idea how darn long I've been wanting a Mac? It's been nearly 20 years. That's a long long long time to wait. (well, maybe just two longs - so long long time) =) I know that some people wait for stuff longer than that, but it's been half my life, so feels long to me. 

So far I'm in love, OF COURSE. Just seeing Garage Band down there in the icons just made me clap my hands and giggle like a three year old who just saw one of those giant theme park lollypops.

By the time my mind realized I wanted to take a picture it was dark, so this will have to do

Me happy =)) 

Me love Macs


Me speechless now

Monday, July 20, 2009

Blurry Progress Shot

My new phone doesn't take sharp pics very well. I finally figured out how to email the pic to myself - thanks to LizzyK8 for the suggestion

Saturday, July 18, 2009

My Brother's Baby Blanket Design

This thing is too cool. I only wish I could get the pictures off my phone to show you the progress as of Thursday. Hopefully, my bro will email the finished pic to me before too long. He's up visiting the friends that the blanket is for, so I won't see the finished project in person. He is finishing it probably as I type. Here's how it looked on Monday.

The Front

In all it's awesomeness
If this was the 80's we'd call this
Interasia to the max, like, TOTALLY dude

The Back

with home-made bobbins
(I made the bobbins out of tags from
some clothes I got at WalMart)
and all the balls of yarn being used at once
dizzying, ain't it?

The Back Again

showing the ridiculous number of ends to be woven in

The Chart

Probably done freehand,
if I know my brother, and I think I do

Maybe he should retire and just make up patterns for majorly awesome knit stuff. =) I can't wait to see the finished pictures. I only wish I could have seen his friends' reactions, that would have been so fun. Does my brother rock out or what?

Sunday, July 12, 2009


I originally posted this to my Coffee Crazy blog - hit the wrong button. That's what I get for blogging in my sleep! - Anyway, here it is:

Where in the world have I been?

Sometimes time just gets away from me. I was a bit sickly for a couple of weeks, then one of my friends came to visit, then we went to visit her in return along with everyone else in that area. So I guess it's been busy around here.

As far as I know, I haven't knit a single stitch since my last post. My brother is doing some interesting knitting, though. With very little instruction and his own ingenuity he has figured out interasia and put it to amazing use. I keep telling him to bring it over so I can photo it in the daylight, but we always manage to get together when it's getting dark. It's turning out really cool, though. He's using cotton that has perfect sheen and in colors you wouldn't expect in a baby blanket, and he's putting the Queen's Reich symbol big and bold in the middle of it. He's making it for a friend who just had a baby. It may just turn out to be the coolest baby blanket ever =) I'm proud of him. I may have taught him to knit, but he's taken off in directions I haven't gone, so it's fun to see what he can do.

Work is going decently well. Things are picking up after the initial Summer slowdown. Someone called me Magic Fingers and marvelous yesterday - lol

I do have pictures in my camera, but I'm too caffiene deprived at the moment to hook it up. We got the satellite guy here now hooking us up with TV. I've held out for... nearly 14 years, refusing to get cable or satellite TV since regular TV eats up too much time already. Our digital receiver though is just awful. The picture is fine, but the guide it uses stinks, most of the channels say "No Information Available" and it's just a pain in the butt. Anytime you want to look at the channel list, it stops receiving the channel it's on and flips to the guide only. I guess it can only think about one thing at a time. Also, we had two DVR's that died within a couple weeks of each other and a major lightning strike. So that was sad, too. We'll be getting a new DVR with the TV deal.

Oh yeah, as for Claudia, she was number 1 again and her ride went very well. yaay

I think I need coffee - talk to y'all later =) sooner rather than later I hope

Sunday, June 21, 2009

A Good Cause

Probably everyone that reads this blog also reads Claudia's Blog but just in case a few extra people wander over there b/c of this post... I figured I'd mention her and her MS Ride Fundraiser. She's only got a few days left before she rides and she's only got 38% of her goal and it would be so awesome if she could retain her #1 status of last year.

You see last year, knitters (and regular people) all over donated to her ride to the extent that she had the highest total of anyone there. That's cool

Of course there are also tons and tons of awesome prizes. All a person has to do to get put into the drawing is donate $10. There are so many prizes that the odds of winning one is very high, and it's super nice (mostly knitterly) stuff. But doesn't everyone know at least one person they like that knits? Well, hopefully if you are reading this blog, that's at least a little true. ;0)

Anyway, maybe if we all post about it in the next couple of days, she'll have a few new readers and get closer to her goal. Whaddyasay?

PS: I don't feel so awful about the baby doves anymore, they are getting bolder and bolder and just stare at me blankly while I photo them now. yaay

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Officially, I Suck

The baby doves have hatched. Apparently they've been hatched for awhile and somehow I just didn't notice. So I decided, I'd try to get a couple of good pictures.

As soon as the mom saw me coming, she flew down to the ground and did the "come and get me and leave my babies alone see I'm hurt and can't fly" dance. That really should have been my cue to think to myself, "Self, leave the babies alone, everyone is getting upset."

I didn't. I wanted to try to get a good picture, since the ones I took from the ground (the 1st picture) yesterday with flash, were just barely ok. So I tried to get the camera a little closer. Turns out, instead, I just scared the poor little things silly and they flew out of the nest. At least they are old enough to fly - thank goodness - or I'd feel like more of a heel. Of course, if they couldn't fly, maybe I could have easily put them back where they belong, if they didn't plummet to their deaths onto the concrete below.

baby bird on the roof next door

baby bird on the ground
on my other next door neighbor's driveway

same baby bird on the ground
between my house and the neighbor's

About this time I feel like a stupid idiot and considered going to stand in fire ants to make myself feel better.

Instead, I tried to corral the baby that flew to the ground back into the shade of my flower garden, which is closer to his/her nest. This worked a little. The pavement was seriously hot and I didn't want the baby to get overheated. Well at some point the baby flew into my garage and into the mouth of a plastic bag which previously held dirt. So I was able to actually pick him/her up and after two tries, deposit him/her back into the nest. --WHEW-- The other baby was already on a branch close to the nest.

sorry about the slight blurriness,
it's a bit windy today

So I left that one well enough alone, finally having learned my lesson to leave baby birds the hell alone. This is something I should have previously learned, I know, and I'm pretty sure I did. That's what happens when the inner photographer fights with the inner animal lover.

The baby bird I put back in the nest DID let me pick it up twice, the first time it didn't have much recourse, having flown into a bag. The second time he/she could have easily escaped, having flown onto the hood of my next door neighbor's truck. You can see him/her looking at me confusedly and perhaps curiously at me from the safety of his/her nest.

I can hear the instinct wheels rolling in it's head, "Why didn't predator eat me when it had a chance?" Of course, I don't want baby to grow up NOT fearing humans, but at least maybe they won't be totally traumatized when I respectfully take pictures from a distance.

I might still go stand in the fire ants if I didn't already have poison ivy all over my face and left hand. I'm pretty sure I'm the first Massage Therapist to call into work "itchy" instead of "sick" at my particular place of employment. Either way, I still feel like a heel and a bad baby bird host.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Life in the Middle Lane

I would say "Fast Lane" but that would be exaggerating. However, between work and laundry and back and forth to baby sitters and sick kids, it's not been easy to keep up with blogging. I have had plenty of knitting and reading time, but that's been at WORK, where it's been so slow lately. I don't know if my first week was a fluke or what, but it went from being crazy busy to worse than slow. Slow would be something like 4 a day, or 5, considering I'm there for 10 hours not including lunch. Fortunately, if I don't have anything going on by 5, I can go. Hopefully it will pick up soon. I only did 2 and 1/2 hours yesterday and it was nearly painful.

On my days off, it's either been torrential rains or blinding heat, so I haven't been able to get the garden sorted out yet. ACK! My seeds and seedlings are going to bake =( Maybe some will live. It's SO late.

With all the storms, though, we've had very interesting cloud and lightning displays.

I took this one for the bird - this light post is in most
of my sky pics, at least this time there's
something different
about it

This is the first time I've ever attempted to get photos of lightning, and I did it the hard-I'm-much-too-slow-for-lightning-way. I'm most proud of the last one.

Rebecka Gecko laid her two pretty little eggs. Compared to her size these eggs are huge. They come out all squishy, though, and harden later. I'm pretty sure it was a couple of days before I noticed the eggs. I'm glad she put in a place that made them very easily removable.

I removed them to their own little incubation spot, as directed by some website or another. Apparently we have some time to wait, so it'll be a while before we have any hatchlings.

Last year, some very pretty flowers migrated under the fence to my yard from my neighbor's yard. I tried and tried to get a good picture of them, but the color was always off. This year, armed with a better camera, I can finally show you both the real color and the name. They are called Mexican Petunias. Ain't they purty?

Finally, sock progress. As I said before, I have tons of knitting time at work, and these socks are coming along pretty well.

I'm using the gusset increase directions from Socks From the Toe Up by Wendy Knits. I am having a bit of an issue not knowing exactly which form of M1 she uses. I started out using kf&b increases, but it looked nothing like the increases in the picture. (the directions don't get specific about which M1 is used, I looked) So then I started doing the M1 where you take the yarn from the space between the last two or first two stitches, but it left a gaping hole. Then I used the same yarn from between those stitches and twisted it good, which closed up the hole. I'm still not sure I'm doing the same M1, but it'll have to do. I didn't rip back every time I changed my increases, I'll call them my 'learning' socks. Ripping back socks made on needles size 0 is not an option unless it's really an awful, horrible, obvious mistake. These aren't mistakes, just experiments. I think they might be a teensy bit too long for me, though. The jury is still out on that one.

One more little bit of news, I now have a Wii Fit which is totally fun and great motivation for exercise. I have nearly always disliked working out. It was fun in school and I liked doing yoga while in massage school, the couple of times we did it. The great thing about the WiiFit thing is that your progress is measurable, it counts every minute you work out, and measures your balance while doing the exercise and you get points for each one according to how balanced you were, etc, so you compete against yourself. It's cool, I like it.