Friday, November 28, 2008

I am thankful for my family

Had a great Thanksgiving Day - all the kids and grandkids gathered at Sarah’s house. I only had to provide a thawed turkey and make the gravy. No cooking, no cleanup, and just a little grandbaby holding duty! I did have to use the allergy meds more than usual due to the two grand-dogs and one grand-cat in the house. I got home about seven and crashed in my easy chair - woke up at one AM breathing freely and feeling restored. Now here I am, wide awake at three AM! Maybe I should go shopping …
I've spent the last half-hour trying to send photos from my phone to my blog - no success, so here we are, photo-less. You will just have to use your imagination!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Mission Statement

Today is an anniversary for me - seventeen years ago today was my first day at GLP - and here I still am. I'm hoping to work one more year of five-day weeks, then go to three-day weeks for two more years, then retire from here and see what comes next. I want the next phase to involve lots of arts & crafts, with some of them for-profit. Hmmm . . . that almost sounds like a real plan. Subject to change, but a plan.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


I know, I haven't posted since the Fourth of July, but life is busy and I'm disorganized. That's just the way it is. I'll post some pictures one of these days and fill you in on what I've been up to since July.
I sat on my porch swing last night with a bag of candy and a bag of knitting. Added several rows to my February Lady sweater and treated about 20 kids, if you count my three grownup kids that stopped by individually. (see note below)
After the trick-or-treating was all over, I curled up in my easy chair to watch a recorded Criminal Minds and started a new Forest Canopy Shawl. Next thing I knew I was looking at the menu screen and had four and a half tiny rows, with half a row of loose stitches. I frogged and went to bed!
1 Tired Dad, with two boys dressed as Pumpkins, on their way home from church carnival, his wife at home ill with something probably carried home from preschool
1 Firefighter, accompanied by a Monk, on their way to a party
1 Pizza Delivery Person, after delivering a pizza in my neighborhood

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Fourth of July Weekend

Hello all!
Hope you had a great Independence Day weekend. Mine started with going to watch the annual parade that travels through my home town along part of Route 66. There were lots of vehicles to enjoy, antique and otherwise, along with horses and bicycles and floats and all those hopeful candidates campaigning for our votes.

I wimped out, though, and left early - wasn't enjoying the heat and I've mostly seen it all before, every year for the last 30 years or so.
I went home, cooled off, blocked my Forest Canopy Shawl, and took a nap.

Sam and family invited me to go watch the 'booms' with the grand-boys, but I just couldn't bear the thought of the traffic. On the Fourth, it takes an hour or more - each way - to drive less than two miles to the park, then there is the walk from the parking lot into the Festival area. So again I wimped out, opting to enjoy the sound of the 'booms' in the air-conditioned comfort of my home.

Saturday morning the kids and I met for breakfast and had a good time in spite of the slightly odd service. They wouldn't let us have a high chair at the end of our booth - the waitress said because someone might trip on it. It was a little close, but we managed. The rest of the crew had places to go and/or naps to take, so I went up the the LYS to knit and visit until Sarah called. She and I went and got our toes done! Funny how a quickly a pedicure can change from a luxury to a necessity!

Later I went to a movie at Penn Square. A few years ago I would never have thought to go to a movie alone, but there are advantages to going my own way. I saw Hancock, the superhero movie starring Will Smith. I wouldn't recommend it for family entertainment, because of bad language and one especially unusual bit of violence, but it was a lot of fun and - dare I say? - somewhat heartwarming. I still want to see WALL-E and Get Smart and maybe even the American Girl movie.

Today - Sunday - I slept in much later than I intended, then decided I had been a lazy slug for long enough and unclogged my slow tub drain. Yes, again. I suppose it needs some regular maintenance if I want to avoid this nasty annual snake job.
Then I got out my big old screwdriver and my rubber mallet and set at defrosting the old refrigerator that sits in my utility room. The freezer part was completely iced in, so between sessions of chipping ice and leaving it to melt (I took a few breaks for knitting and reading and TV watching) I finally got the freezer door open and took the food out. It went much faster after that.

I seem to be falling back into my old habit of reading daily. This week I listened to Nevada Barr's Winter Study on CD (in my car) , read Robert Crais' L.A. Requiem and Jennifer Chiaverini's Quilter's Apprentice. Last week I read Brendan DuBois' Resurrection Day, a disturbing story set in 1971, depicting what our country might have been like if the Cuban Missile Crisis had escalated into nuclear war.
I also started Absolute Power by David Baldacci, but when I figured out why I kept thinking about Clint Eastwood I gave it up. Decided I'll try to find a Baldacci book that wasn't a movie that I have seen.
Next up on my eclectic selections are Mrs. Pollifax Unveiled by Dorothy Gilman and Twilight, another dark story by Brendan DuBois. I'm not sure I will read Twilight right away; I love DuBois' Lewis Cole series, and he is a very good writer, but I'm not sure I can stomach two such dark stories so close together - his writing makes them seem almost real.
I have a reserve in for William G. Tapply's One-Way Ticket - he's another of my many favorites.
And so to bed, for tomorrow is another work day. 'Night, all!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Is this February 2nd?

Hello there! I just thought I would poke my head out, like a groundhog, and see what's going on around me! Sorry I haven't posted lately. It is just like anything else that I put off - the longer I put it off, the harder it is to start again. This little note is just an attempt to build a fire under me. I don't think I can pick up where I left off and fill in everything to date.
PS: On the right, here-- that's Max. Doesn't he look strong and wise? He's quiet, and quick to smile. He'll be three months old this Saturday.

Tracking backwards through time - I had lunch with a few of my favorite people today; sorry, no pictures. Six of us came from four different places to meet for a cheap and tasty burger; Cousin Beth came from her home; Sam, my favorite son, came from his office; DIL Andrea brought the two little boys from their home; and I came from my office. It's amazing how fast an hour can pass, but it surely is a nice break for the middle of a workday!

Tuesday nights, for a while now, has been an informal, but regularly scheduled, knit night for Anita, Polly, and me. Actually, I don't know how long this has been ongoing - I was invited a few months ago to join in this established event. We started out going to Starbucks, which was nice, but decided that a bookstore might be quieter and have more available seating, and still have tasty concoctions to sip on as we knit. So, for a couple of months now, we've been meeting at Borders - and naturally we sit in the section where the knitting books are. Last week I got really tickled when some young ladies stopped by and asked us a few questions. I had the distinct feeling that they saw us as a quaint exhibit organized by the bookstore.

Sometimes I get to kidnap a grandchild for no special reason. One evening recently, the little man and I went out for dogs and a beer. I was pleased to find that A&W does still serve root beer in chilled mugs!

My favorite local yarn store usually closes at six pm, but on Thursday nights is open until eight pm. A growing number of us have developed the pleasant habit of dropping in to knit and visit. We have a lot of laughs and always ooh and aah over everyone else's projects. There's a lot of yarn petting and fondling that goes on there. I always come away with ideas for more projects.
Polly, one of my Tuesday night knitting pals, threw down a challenge last week. I've been knitting socks two at a time, on one circular needle. She brought me a pattern for two socks knitted at the same time, one inside each other. Of course, I had to accept the challenge--so even though I have several works in progress, I picked out some likely yarn last Thursday, and will probably cast on tomorrow night! I'll try to shoot and post some pictures.

Our darlin' boy turned three years old earlier this month, and had a backyard party with a cars theme. Or maybe it was a Cars theme. Guests were supposed to only bring one tiny car each as gifts, and most people complied. Grandmothers and aunts can be exempted from the rules, can't they? I have lots of pictures of that fun event.

That pretty much takes care of June, except for showing you the shawl I made. It still needs to be blocked, but I'm pretty happy with it. I had my doubts about getting it finished at all when I ran out of yarn just before the end, but Carol, another knitting pal, rescued me. She is making a sweater, scarf, and hat with the same yarn, and gave me enough to finish my scarf. (Thanks again, fellow Crazy Lady!)

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mothers' Day!

And a happy Mothers' Day to everyone - even those of you whose babies have four legs or scales or feathers or whatever!
My kids had a big surprise for me. The only clue they gave me was that I had to be up and dressed by ten a.m. - no sleeping in or lounging in my jammies. I figured they were going to take me out somewhere, but I was so wrong. We never left the premises.
After we enjoyed chocolate-glazed donuts and Mothers' Day cards, they pretty much abandoned me in the house with my new grandson (that's a REALLY sneaky trick).
My merciless crew then proceeded to empty and organize my two-car garage. They discarded enough of my trash and treasures to make room for my one small car. I've lived in this house for 29 years and I am trying to remember if I have ever seen a vehicle in this garage - a vehicle bigger than a bicycle, that is. (Hey, there WAS a bicycle in there - where did it go?)
I'm a little sorry we didn't do before and after pictures, but the 'before' was every bit as cluttered as you can imagine.
P.S. If anyone needs a sturdy 4' x 8' worktable, please come by and pick it up from the curb!

Friday, March 28, 2008

He's here!

Our new baby is here at last! He arrived Friday, 03/28/08, at 1:06am, weighing in at 8 lbs, 12 oz.

Saturday, March 22, 2008


Let me tell you, two four-day weeks with a fun-filled weekend in between makes for one long day. By Thursday I was so out of it that when I got home from work, I sat down in my recliner intending to read my mail, and slept for twelve hours straight. I did feel much better Friday. Sometimes the old bod just has to say STOP!
The weekend was a wonderful experience. We drove from OKC, which is 1299 ft above sea level, to a point just across the Continental Divide, and just east of the Arizona state line. We spent the weekend at 6568 ft above sea level, and I for one could tell the difference in the air.
We met some really nice people; all but one were Navajo, since there was no one else there. I made friends with a loveable Lab named Opie, and four of us cousins had a really fun slumber party.
Oh, and one more thing - I finished my Branching Out scarf!
Be forewarned, I'll be back in a day or two with lots of pictures to show you.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

* poof! *

I arrived at work at 7:45 am today, with a smile on my face and a peaceful feeling in my heart.
It's noon. They're both gone.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Knitting Daily

Illness among my co-workers* has increased my already full workload, so the past couple of weeks have been a little rough for me.
* (I always feel compelled to hyphenate that word, otherwise I tend to read it as "Cow Orkers" whatever those might be - it doesn't sound pretty.)
More work hours mean fewer play hours, but I have been steadily working on my
Branching Out scarf,

and have started a pair of toe-up socks.

The cold weather will probably end just as I finish this warm wool/alpaca scarf, but I will be able to wear the socks year round.

I hope to block these Baby Pea Pod pieces and sew them together this week.

Off to see the wizard . . .

Last night I took my favorite Little Man to see a high school production of Wizard of Oz .
We both enjoyed the show even though it was three hours long.

On the ride home, I asked him which part he liked best.
"The lion. He went 'aargh and aargh.' "

I asked him if he liked the music.
"It was beautiful."

Then he went to sleep in his carseat.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Saturday Morning

As I write this I am comfortably reclined in an upholstered chair, surrounded by equipment humming and clicking and occasionally beeping. A monitor and keyboard hover in front of me supported by an articulated arm *what the heck is that noise*

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Please excuse the interruption. I am at home now.

I intended to continue that first paragraph by explaining to you that I was blogging one-handed because my left arm was busy with a fat needle and a several clear tubes connected to an intricate machine named Amicus that was pumping blood out of my arm, extracting life-saving platelets, and returning my blood to me.

You may or may not know, so I will explain, that this is a completely sterile process, because the Amicus and others of its ilk are set up for each extraction with a sealed 'kit' of tubes and bags and such, so the only opening in the entire kit is at the needle. Everything from my entry paperwork to the final product is identified with barcode labels.

The kit itself fits into openings in the Amicus, and loading it is a process that - well, if you sew, have you ever threaded a serger? It's a lot like that. Bags go on hooks, tubes go into channels and around gears, and I don't know what else. It is an extremely well monitored system and I feel completely safe with the procedure, plus I get that warm fuzzy feeling of having done something beneficial for a cancer patient or some idiot who doesn't know to slow down when the streets are icy. They tell me that one platelet donation can save three lives.

I was going to tell you about my surroundings, including the man to my right who was quietly snoring, and the lady to my left who was engrossed in a book. I was going to describe the two phlebotomists who were at this time all the way down at the end of the long room, taking care of some chores after making sure we donors were snugly settled in.

I was rudely interrupted from this pleasant story-telling by the sudden onset of horrible banging and clanking and screeching noises from that wonderful machine named Amicus.

As I said, no one was nearby, so I said, loudly, "HELP!" That, or possibly the awful noises from Amicus, got the immediate attention of two skilled professionals, who rapidly shut down the machine, pulled the needle from my arm, and applied a gauze pad to the hole so my blood wouldn't leak out. They were calm but definitely not smiling as they diagnosed the problem as a "defective kit." I got the impression that this was something that would be intensely investigated. I can't even imagine how much paperwork this incident will generate.

They told me I was fine, but I would have to wait the full 58 days before I could donate again because I did not get that 'return'. I would need that time to rebuild my blood.

I really admire those women. I feel so safe in their care. Most of the time, everything goes as planned, but when it doesn't, there is no hesitation. They know exactly what to do.
I am really sorry they had to clean up all that mess, and I'm also sorry the blood was wasted. I'll go back in April. Or maybe May.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Tagged again

Anna tagged me for the same "meme" - would someone please tell me what that word means?
Anyhoo, here I go again - Good thing I've got more than one book . . .

Nearest book: Assuming that means physically nearest, this is on top of the stack of four I picked up at the library last night:
  • Killer Waves, by Brendan DuBois.
I like his writing style and the characters he has created, and am trying to read my way through his entire body of work. (I wanted to use that French word that makes me think of eggs but I don't know how to spell it.)

Page 123:
  • Has words, even paragraphs. That's good!
Skip five sentences, post the next three:
  • "Anyway, the meeting got even stranger when people started arguing on why dogs have to get licensed, and cats don't, and cat owners are freeloaders when compared to dog owners. That's when I gave it up and decided to leave."
  • "Good choice."
Am I the only one that has trouble refraining from adding context around these sentences?

Tag five people: I'm not entirely sure that I personally know five more bloggers, but I'll try.
*hmmmm* (humming and thinking) *hmm hmm hmm* (there has to be someone!)

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Anita made me do it

I realize that I have not been blogging lately. It's not that I don't enjoy it - I have just felt very boring lately. But then I did say "even if no one else finds it interesting" so here I am, back again with boring stuff to say. Or maybe not . . .

Anita and I met at Starbuck's tonight for a mini-knit-in. We talked and knitted and laughed at ourselves. That was fun. And when you get right down to it, that sweet lady can be really sneaky. When she asked me if I had read her blog lately she didn't tell me she had tagged me.

I'm IT, so here goes!

Pick up the nearest book of 123 pages or more: Even though it is physically the closest, I think I'll skip the phone book - it doesn't have sentences. Next-nearest book is a used book that was given to me, and I haven't read it yet. Title is Spring Hill, Tennesee, subtitle, A Novel, author, Tom T. Hall.

I like his songs, so I should like his book as well.

On page 123, find the first 5 sentences: Done.

Post the next 3 sentences: "You oughta dress up mo' often. It make you look ten years younger every time."
Amanda brushed the front of the tweed jacket with her hand.

Tag five people: Andrea, Sam, Carolyn, Amanda, Linda

Fait accompli. I've never done this before; am I supposed to tell them they've been tagged, or just hang out until they find this?

Uh oh - look at the time! Yet another reason for me to avoid this activity. I really need to get more sleep!

I'll try to stop by here sooner next time. Just don't try to make me promise.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

It's only February - want to see those Christmas socks?

Sam, those are NOT for your ears!

Melissa always HAS liked purple.

Pat got socks for his hands.

Warm tootsies for my beautiful granddaughter!

No socks visible here, just had to show you a cute grandkid!

(I did make him a pair of socks - we just didn't get a picture. )