Friday, September 30, 2005

The Promised Update Avec Photos

As promised, the latest, with photos. A crazy week indeed (perhaps that will now just be a given and any "difference" will be noted?). It's been a full week; let's just say that. And while I felt incredibly stressed at some points, I didn't cry. I didn't shoot anyone (don't own a gun). I didn't yell at anyone (in person). I did suffer from tunnel vision for one full work day, but can that ever be bad, really?

Started off the week dilly-dallying by the hostas when I caught sight of this HUGE garden spider (made me late to work, it did):

And here's the big honkin' spider with its shadow showing. It has an interesting zig-zag in the middle of its web. I've not seen it since so either it's foraging for food, dead, or the neighbor scared it away.

Speakin' of BUGZ
The next evening I went out to
my car for something and was greeted by a VERY LOUD and VERY LARGE cicada (be glad I don't know how to upload sound, otherwise you'd get the rev-up and rev-down said cicada provided me as I stood by to photograph him (her?). [This makes me certain, too, that if my neighbors didn't already think I was a little strange, indeed taking pictures of tree trunks in the otherwise-dark, would certainly be a signal here.] No quarter to use for comparison, but the bugger is about 3 - 4 inches long!!! (And it lengthens when it sings, then shrinks as it stops!! [don't go there])

Wednesday was a wash, and Thursday was catching up on sleep time. Actually I knitted while hanging out at my sister's so I'll show that soon since it's a scarf I need YOUR advice on.

What Stress?
Did some more stash building today. (Have discovered this is my stress releasor.) AND I found a way to save money and still look through good knit books -- GO TO THE LIBRARY!!! Whew! I think I walked out of there with 8 books and my wallet is very happy about that. Tonight I did go to an actual bookstore and looked at the new Yarn Harlot: The Secret Life of a Knitter from the author of At Knit's End. Will purchase that tomorrow since tonight I used my 25% off coupon on The Best of Knitter's Magazine: Shawls and Scarves. I am so lucky to have FIVE LYS and FOUR Borders Bookstores in my town. Can't imagine life in a small town!!! (just kidding, sis!!)

Have I mentioned the DAWG?
Kramer is not actually "my" dog, but I live in a house behind a house, so Kramer comes back to see me for doggy bones and to welcome me home (for doggy bones) and to check on me from time to time (for doggy bones). Get the picture? He's getting older now and his hearing is going a bit, but he still "talks" to me when he wants a doggy treat -- and get one he does. Here he is laying in the hall at his house (he's part German Shephard and part Black Labrador).

Samson Sez:

"HI THERE! WHATCHYA DOIN'?!!" - when I was otherwise in take-shower mode a little gray-feathered head appeared around the corner of the shower curtain.

Here's Samson on Wednesday, when he beat me to the shower (can't stop the birdie from takin' his weekly shower, especially since it was a few days overdue!).

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

What a Difference A WEEK Makes

Goodness, has it been a whole week since I've blogged? You betchya, but not because of anything like a vacation. Just been overwhelmingly overwhelmed. Don't know why I didn't carry my knitting with me. That always seems to help me relax a bit. But of course, working on the computer all day AND knitting don't exactly work either.

Alas, no photos today. I'm at my sister's house and don't have a way to upload my pics.

You'll enjoy them once I get them loaded, though, trust me.

Samson is getting his weekly shower in one, and I have a picture of a HUGE garden spider and a HUGE cicada that was making mega-racket outside one evening this week.

I think I have pictures of additional stash-building activities when I figured out I was not going to Disney World for 8 days in October (and had some extra $ on hand). I've performed a wedding in the time I've been away from you, too. Alas, yes, very busy.

Samson Sez
"Old McDonald had a ........ BIRD!" (Honest, I don't make these things up, but HE sure does!!)

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Is Skipping Allowed?

You know how it is when you're talking with a special friend/family member who speaks "your language". Well today, you are that person for a short period of time. Honored? Terrified? I understand.

I had trouble with my hard drive back in May. Still recovering with a new hard drive and so
me great recovery software from GetDataBack. However, I find my music skips occasionally, or hangs. Bad? No, I don't think, so much. Just occasionally noticeable. Of course, Wendy has made me want an IPod, so now I'm wondering what I'll do to convert my wma files to mp3s. But that's another post entirely.

Jammin' with the Bird
I'm sittin' here enjoying my new (to me) Bose TriPort headphones I won from ebay for half the price. At this moment, I don't think the crack in the plastic of the top of the headphones part is affecting the playback at all. Thanks, icc3! Anywho, I'm enjoying my tunes clear and pure and, well in the most Bose-way possible.

Samson is having to put up with my singing without
hearing the tunes behind the "madness". At least I keep a good enough beat that he can still bob his head to.

Additions to the Yarn Stash

I promised yesterday that I would share pictures
of additions to the yarn stash from our nation's capital. Here's the pic:

Then I came home and was still in the mood to add to the stash. So I went to Carma and Close-Knit and purchased some more lovelys. (pictures tomorrow)

So I forgot
to mention the wonderful gift from my sis in Texas. A L.L. Bean Personal Organizer. I saw our other sister had one when we were on a Disney cruise last Fall. Jealously, I menioned it to said sister and she quickly fixed her error by gifting me with one for my birthday. It's perfect for such travel needs, whether a couple days or a couple of weeks, really.

My mom went out of town for her high school's class "alumni" which occurs annually in lieu of a class reunion, since there were about 50 in her graduating class. So I'm taking care of her African Gray, Annie, until tomorrow afternoon. Annie's a sweetie.

Samson Sez:
"Can you say, ':Hi Oakland?'" (our neighbor boy)

Friday, September 16, 2005

Home Again, Home Again. Jiggity Jig

I love to fly to places, but I also love to fly home again. I was in our nation's capital this week attending a seminar for work. The DoubleTree Hotel Crystal City where the seminar was held, and where I stayed, was simply beautiful!

Here's a pic of the accommodations:

and the beckoning message on the pillow

Oh yeah . . . and the warm cookie they give everyone when s/he checks in. I called this LUNCH.

and the view out my window (9th floor "city view").

Put a Fork In Me -- I'm Done

I actually got to go to Knit Happens IN PERSON.

And I met Holly, the shop manager, IN PERSON (pictured below ringing up my first day's purchases). It's kind of lik
e meeting celebrities, really, to meet these people I've been seeing pictures of and reading stories about on blogs.

I also met Kristine who owns Knit Happens, and a bunch of great knitters when I attended Late Night on Wednesday. I went over budget (can you actually have a yarn budget?) while i
ncreasing my yarn stash. Some of the knitters are also bloggers so I've added them to my "must read" list (which I'll add to the sidebar in the next week). NurseLaura gave me a ride back to the Metro station, which was much appreciated!! (Thanks Laura!)

I met a teacher and a Naval officer. The gal who oversees the KH online shop, and the list goes on. The conversation around the table was quite diverse, and yes, we did talk about yarn, knitting and patterns a bit in there, too. (Stay tuned for pictures of the additions to my stash from KH. I'm tired now and gonna go look at my yarn some more.)

Haze Gray and Underway

I spent an extra evening in town to visit with "old Navy friends" whom I was stationed with in Hawaii in the mid -1980s. Their young boys (three of them) are all in their 20s now. The oldest teaches in the DODDS system in Korea, the middle is in Springfield, MO, defining himself, and the youngest is an Electrician Apprentice in northern Virginia. Mom and Dad are dear friends and it was great to spend time with 4 of the 5 folks in person (though I did talk with Evan in MO on the phone briefly).

Alas, I did not get to meet Wendy Knits or the King of All Remote Controls in person, but their spirit of kindness was in the air.

I'm home again, and Samson was happy to see me. At least I think he was. When I walked in ...

Samson Said
"Supper? Supper?"

(Note: Bird not pictured to actual size -- I don't know why, but this shot seems to make him look the size of a cardinal instead of his full 16".)

Saturday, September 10, 2005

First Knitted Garment Complete! ! !

Finally! It's true. I finally seamed together the Cathy poncho from Queensland Book 2 with the Maldive yarn in a beautiful red tweed color. See?:

I don't think the came
ra really catches its deep blue-red color correctly, but I love the finished product! Here's what it looks like on the model in the book:

Here's a close up of the seam from the wrong side:

And from the right side:

Happy Birthday MOM!!
As you've read in my recent posts, it's been a hectic week. So much so I forgot to post a picture of my mom enjoying her birthday cake and ice cream at Smokey Bones Barbeque! Mom turned 74 on Sept. 3rd. She loves barbecue and really enjoyed the baby back ribs. Then we were treated to their Chocolate Fudge Cake and Ice Cream! Happy Birthday Mom!!!

Samson Sez:

"Mom, I'm tired of you ta
king my picture all the time." [Well, okay, he didn't really say that, but in lieu of a Samson photo, here's a picture of my next project.]

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Is It _______ Yet?

You fill in the blank. Gosh what a week it's been. Everyday I awake to the news from Katrina recovery. I'm struggling to get thru the week with otherwise "normalcy" going on around me, so I can't really fathom what it has been like for the survivors and refugees from the storm.

Psalm 46:10 - Be still and know that I am God.

Mark 4: 39 - Peace, be still.

Samson Sez:
"Go finish your breakfast."

Friday, September 02, 2005

The Red Cross Rocks !!!

It just came over me that I am really really impressed with the American Red Cross. Everyday people you wouldn't really know were Red Cross workers if you passed them in the market, and there they go, packing up quickly, leaving home and family, to care for others in desperate times in desperate need. Well-trained, multi-disciplined, caring people -- I think that's the job description for these folks. Thank you, thank you, thank you to you and your families who support you back home as you venture out to care for the most basic physical and psychological needs of people--strangers, yet not strangers.

Do you remember the scenes from the movie Bruce Almighty when Bruce kept hearing random voices in his head? God pointed out those were prayers. Thank you for adding to those voices every second as you raise up the names of people known and unknown to you by calling on our God to give mercy and support during these hard times in the Gulf Coast region.

Thank You
In our community people (hurricane refugees) have begun arriving seeking shelter. I know of a local church assisting two women who can't even access their bank accounts because the banking infrastructure is reliant on computers - thus electricity. If you have the means and hear of the need in your community, seek out a way to assist, whatever feels right for you.

Samson Sez:
"Knock. Knock."

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Solving the World's Problems

Well, maybe not truly solving the world's problems, but everyone everywhere seems to have solutions. Around the watercooler, in the grocery, at the local diner, everyone's talking about the havoc wrought by Hurricane Katrina. I grew up with a girl named Katrina; hadn't thought much about her until her name was said about every 30 seconds every where I turn. You experiencing that, too? Many people have been touched by the hard news coming out of Louisiana, Mississippi and other coastal states. Any solutions at your end?

One Solution
A couple of knittin' bloggers have an idea. Margene and Susan are asking those who can to donate to the American Red Cross. My favorite blogger, Wendy, alerted her
audience to this solution, so I'm doing the same. Once you donate, e-mail Margene or Susan at to let them know what you donated so they can keep a tally -- and you might even win a prize! Go to Margene's or Susan's blog to get the specifics. If you'd like to donate a prize to encourage others to give, read their blog entries about how to do that, too. I'm tempted to give lots of $5 donations so maybe I can win Wendy's donation of her recently completed Peacock Feathers Shawl.

Glad I Ride a Motorcycle
At 50 miles to the gallon (or more) the motorcycle is looking better and better as my modus transporti. This is what we woke up to in Kentucky -- how about you?

I hear we can expect to see gas prices go over $4 a gallon. I needed to start exercising, again, more motivation.

Samson Sez:
"Seed Time! Seed Time! Yeay, Seed Time!!!"