Monday, December 31, 2007
Christmas was wonderful at our house, but also with some sadness. My sister, Glyness was with us and that was wonderful and our son, Christopher was home; that too being wonderful. We did lots of shopping, wrapping gifts, baking, and running around the week before Christmas. On Christmas Eve we loaded all our gifts along with some foods into the car and drove into the city to have Christmas at our daughter's home. What grandmama could wake up on Christmas morning and not see what Santa had left for their granddaughter. We go on the afternoon of Christmas Eve, staying until after breakfast on Christmas morning.
We had such a good time during our fondue dinner on Christmas Eve. Our family being together laughing, kidding around, and enjoying wonderful food and wine. After a long evening at the table, we went across the hall and into the living room for the Christmas tree and exchanging of gifts. Dari was so precious to watch. She was so excited over each and every gift and said a thank you to each of us as she opened our gifts to her. So precious! She slept between papa and I that night and we heard Santa's reindeer on the roof before she was able to settle down enough to sleep. This was the first time I'd heard Santa on the rooftop in a long, long time.
After Santa, the stockings, and a country ham breakfast on Christmas morning we headed back to the country for a rest and to prepare for dinner. Standing rib roast, buttered new potatoes, green bean bundles and fresh salad greens.
Papa got sick on Christmas morning, then my sister and Dari. Next day was my daughter, by Friday the virus had gotten around to me and by Saturday it had gotten to my son-in-law. My sister and I also have sinus infections and are on Z-paks to clear them up. While at the Dr. I ask that my sister's blood work be done and it came back with her red count very, very low. Because I live eight hours from her and her Oncologist, I felt I needed to get her home in case she needed a blood transfusion. We left early on Sat. morning to come back to SC. I will stay with her until she sees her Oncologist and I know she is going to be alright to be left alone again. I don't like the idea of her being alone but with the distance between us it makes it difficult to be here, or her with me, all the time. During all this, our oldest sister has been in the hospital in Atlanta with a blood clot in the artery to her heart. She is 87 and they can't do surgery because of other health problems. We are expecting every phone call to bring us bad news.
I am working on a few easy projects that I can lay down on a minutes notice without causing a problem if I can't get back to it right away. One is Sharon Dreifuss's Melly bag pattern. I'm knitting the body of the bag in a shade of pink that I adore, using cream for the trims, pockets, and handles. Have you seen the Knitters the Winter issue of Knitter's yet? I love the Chalk Stripe Scarf featured on page 43. I must knit that in 2008 and I want to do a pair of socks in 2008. I am planning to do socks and a few other projects and stitches that I've never done because they aren't my thing. I'm going to knit these items so I can say I have knitted them and to venture off the roads that I usually travel. New routes often takes us to new and interesting views.
All my exchanges are completed except for the Christmas Around the World Exchange. I am still waiting for a package from my upstream partner. I have to do some thinking about participating in exchanges in 2008. I love preparing and sending my partners their packages and learning about new people. I may want to continue or I may decide to take a break. Either way, this past year has been fun and I've met some wonderful people and received some wonderful surprises. There been a couple of disappointments but that is to be expected. Not understood, but expected.
Tomorrow is the beginning of a New Year. While I won't be staying up to see the new year in, I will cook collard greens, hog jowl (bacon) and black eyed peas for my sister and I tomorrow. We need all the good luck we can get. Happy New Year To You and Good Luck!
Friday, December 21, 2007
Saturday, December 15, 2007
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
My entralac stole was finally completed and blocked before we left for the our last trip. I've worn it several times already and love it. Once completed and wet-blocked, it became soft and lost the scratchy texture that I found discouraging while I was knitting it. Although it was time consuming, I would knit another one, or some other project in entralac. In fact, my Tuesday night knit group wants me to teach them the 'how-to' in a knit-along for our group once the Jacobean bag is finished after Christmas. I'll be happy to share what I learned with the group and know they will enjoy knitting this project as much as I did. We have a couple of ladies in the group that loves and wears shawls almost as much as I do.
I have only a couple of rows left to knit before I bind off the Sara Punderson Alpaca Vest pattern project I've been knitting on. I should finish up tonight unless I find out I'm to go to SC again tomorrow and bring my sister back for Christmas with us. The trip is dreaded but having her here makes it worth the drive. I love her so dearly.
I have finished knitting another simple bag and it is ready for giving once it is felted, lined and a handle added. There are still several other projects 'setting'. waiting to be worked up. I can't wait for the holidays to be over so I can once again take to my recliner and knit the days away until spring approaches and the garden begins to call me.
Friday, December 7, 2007
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
It's not a good photo because I had to face the sun when I was taking it, but it gives you an idea of how large it is and I'll make a better photo once it is dry and steamed down if needed. I used all but a few yards of Nora's Silk Garden Lite to knit the shawl and the 9th ball for fringe. DH ask if I'd charge $500 to knit one for someone else and my reply was 'about that since it has almost $100 of yarn in it and it has taken me almost six months to knit' LOL. Actually the actual knitting went rather quick, I'm just always working on a half-dozen projects at a time.
Monday, November 26, 2007
I've been busy today getting my packages ready for the post. I have one for my Bag-A-Holic partner and one for my Christmas Around The World partner and the last one for my Secret-Pal-1 pal. Each has been lots of fun putting together and I think my pals will be pleased with them.
I've also been busy making photos of some of the gifts I've been making for family and friends. There are hats, bags, and bowls. I failed to get a photo of a purple hat, it went into one of the boxes that is ready to send out but I do have one of a Christmas Red (Patons marino) felted hat that I knitted for a sister and another one in a different shade of red (Cascade 220). The purple was made from Lopi (Reynolds) and is such a fabulous shade of purple, I loved it. The bowl is made from scrap yarn and I think both pieces are Patons marino, I love Patons for felting and caught it on sale in late summer so bought up a bit of it. It doesn't let me down; that I like after having spent my time knitting a project. The bag I made in the Bag Style Knit-a-long I participated in is also made from Patons, taking almost the entire two skeins of yarn. That's another thing I love about that yarn, for most felted bags and felted hats, two skeins is about the right amount. I like to have only a tiny bit left over after a project is finished; if I have almost a full skein left over I'm aggravated.
Tonight is knit night in the city with friends. We didn't meet last week because of guest visiting for Thanksgiving and everyone busy with preparations for Thursday. Tonight will be catch up night on our lady's new love lives. It's wonderful to see them in love again in their golden years.
Tomorrow night will be knit night in the village. Last week we met at someone's home because the shop's proprietor didn't have time to keep the shop open (?). We had a really nice time away from the shop and I'm expecting that the first of the year we will decide to meet at a different person's home each week rather than this constant haggling with the new owner. It's a good group of ladies and we don't want to give up our knit group, still we don't want to have stipulations put on when we can or can't meet. I understand the new proprietor has a group that meets during the week-day and that’s fine, but some people do have to work. This is a working group except for the two of us that have now retired. She also wants to put is in a situation where we feel obligated to use this knitting time just for charity. Most of us already knit for charity with other groups and feel we want this time for our personal time. Anyway, the idea is on the burner until after Christmas. Everyone has too many other things to think about and keep us busy until then.
Saturday, November 24, 2007
Thanksgiving Day in central Virginia was 'hot', not warm, but plain hot and humid. We turned the ceiling fans on in both the kitchen and the great room well before noon; still it was too warm. I think the temperature climbed to about 76 degrees, much to warm for the end of November. In mid-afternoon we had a bit of rain which allowed the temperature to begin cooling off and today its downright cold.
Our Thanksgiving was wonderful. It was wonderful having the family all together once more and a wonderful abundance of good food on the table and good friends stopping in to say hello. I am so thankful for it all. Last year I was having a rough time with chemo-treatments, this year I feel great. Such a big change in health and I am thankful for it and being able to be with my beloved family through another year.
Last night little Dariana spent the night with papa and I. It was such a good time for us all. We played pretend, her favorite game, to entertain her until bedtime. We had an imaginary birthday party with peanut butter and jelly cake and candles, and imaginary school with a story being read from one of my knitting magazines about peacocks (from an advertisements she saw inside), and we played house with 'my baby' falling and hitting her head on the hearth and mommy taking her to the Dr. to get medicine. We can see that each of these pretends are so real to little Dariana. She is so much fun and we adore her.
I do have the hats and bag I mentioned on last post, felted and ready to send out tomorrow but I've put off making photos yet; I will have to post them later. I'm pleased with the way they each turned out and hope my pals will be pleased once they are received. I have one more project to knit for a pal (plan to work on it later tonight) and I will be finished up with my current swaps. I want to knit two quick bags to have for hostess gifts while we are visiting family next week, one for a niece and one for a sister-in-law. The Nicky Epstein bag is in its first stages. I've decided I will only work on it during my Tuesday night group knitting, at least until after the first of the year when things settle down a bit.
Friday, November 16, 2007
The hats before fulling, two different reds, Paton's on the left and Cascade on the right.
Today I finished the triangle bag I've been working on, sewed it together and felted it. It turned out very pretty I think and although it is quiet a bit smaller than it was before being fulled, it is still a nice, roomy bag. I think I will enjoy it and am thinking of doing one for a sister-in-law in black and cream or black and gray, either would be pretty I think. This was an easy knit if you don't mind decreases and increases on almost every row all the way through the bag. You do have to keep up with the grouping of rows so that your pieces can be matcher perfectly once you start putting it together and it does take awhile to knit because it is knit with size 6 needles. I used Paton's yarn and put it though two short cycles to get it to the felted point that I wanted. Usually I get by with one cycle but today I added two hats and a long I-cord for one of the hats, perhaps that is why it needed the additional time. They all came out nicely and are on the kitchen counter drying right now.
Mr. Maestro and his friend, Sissy, the poodle from next door, went to the groomer together this morning to get all pretty and fresh for Thanksgiving. Maestro was a tiny bit un-tidy after spending Wednesday with the veterinarian getting his teeth cleaned and three of them extracted. It had only been a year in August since we had his teeth cleaned but in that period he had gotten gum disease and had three impacted teeth. I cried of course, but am glad we got it taken care of before there was a real problem. Maestro is 11 years old now, not a young age for canine.
While I was car-pooling and picking up the last items from the grocery for our Thanksgiving dinner, Mr. Rō was potting iris to be given as door prizes at our Harvest Dinner for the Iris Society tomorrow. They are waiting for me to put a foil-wrap around them so they will look festive and catch any soil that might escape the pots. I've already prepared my dish to go, a curried rice salad with artichokes, shrimp, water chestnuts, almonds and black olives. I snuck a few bites before I put it away and it taste yummy. Tomorrow is also the local knitting guild meeting so I'll get up moving in the morning to be there at 9 o'clock and then at the Iris Society by 1 o'clock. We will leave that event early so that Mr. Rō can get home in time to see part of the VA Tech football game. All Hoakies out there knows how important that is; NOTHING comes before a Hoakie Game.
I can now concentrate on the Jacobean bag and finish up the shawl. I do need to get two additional bags made before the first week in December when we go to visit family. I want everything finished up by the end of the year because come Jan 1, I hope to knit sweaters. They have been on hold and its time I got them knitted. Too, I haven't accomplished much toward the trip I wanted us to take to Great Britain late next spring. I'm beginning to think it may be put on hold for awhile, there doesn't seem to be time to work it in. A decision will have to be made soon or I won't be able to make the arrangements for us to stay the length of time I'd like to.
I have my last SP-11 package ready to go in the mail, the needles I'd ordered from Paradise Fibers finally came yesterday after I contacted them to see what the problem was. I also have the bag for my pal of the Bag-A-Holic Swap ready to go. I want to get both of these packages in the mail Monday if possible. That will leave only the Christmas Around The World Exchange for me to complete this year. Next year I must do fewer exchanges and knit-along and work more on sweaters, sweaters, sweaters. Will I be able to? I hope so, but gosh I do love a good exchange.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
The iris buds that Mr. Rō brought in from his garden last week has bloomed and I failed to get pictures to post. The green tomatoes on the window sills are ripening and I am expecting to still have ripe tomatoes for the Thanksgiving Holidays when DS will be home for a few days. We'll have lots of salads while he is here because he is watching his weight again. Like his mother he doesn't mind salad meals, we both love our veggies. We've always had a traditional Thanksgiving dinner in the middle of the afternoon, but a few years ago we begin deep-frying the turkey in place of baking it. The turkey comes out so moist and good with the crispy skin having sealed in the juices when it was dropped into the pot of hot grease. It makes a pretty and golden brown bird for the table.
I've been thinking about Christmas and what I can give to some of my knitting friends. I've decided on a project, something that I think they will all enjoy but in case one of them is reading this, I won't say what it is. I can tell you this much, I found the perfect piece of material to use for linings, a black background with a white kitty-cat playing in a ball of twine. As soon as I finish the shawl and the triangle bag I plan to cut the linings and start sewing.
Thursday, November 8, 2007
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
Saturday, November 3, 2007
Later in the afternoon we stopped by 'Lettuce Knit' near my old home and were discussing why there wasn't any knitting booths. One of the ladies remarked that she thought it was because this particular craft show doesn't draw the kind of people that are willing to pay for hand knitted items. I agree to some extent, but I go a bit farther in thinking that most people aren't willing to pay for hand knitting, period. Why? well I believe that most people never go into a true yarn shop and see all the beautiful fibers and colors that are available today. I believe most people's knowledge of knitting and crochet is from the yarn they see in the local craft stores usually selling in an under $5.00 price range and of seeing their grandmother knit or crochet using that acrylic yarn. While acrylic yarn has its place, it is the natural fibers that I think of when speaking of handmade versus homemade. Handmade to me means something that you put your heart and soul into to make it special and beautiful as well as made well. Most people never think this far and only see $5.00 for a skein of yarn and not anything for the labor. Labor? Yes, to me knitting is a labor of love, but if I'm going to sell it, then it has to be a labor of my time spent making you something by hand and that ain't cheap.
For lunch we stopped by Kuba-Kuba for sandwiches and plantains. Yum. Sally had never been here before. It wasn't just the food I wanted her to experience, I wanted her to enjoy the atmosphere. Kuba-Kuba is in an old section of the city; its very, very tiny located in the ground-floor basement of a nice, big old home. It is tiny in size and larger than life in everything else. Noise, wobbly tables, extremely uncomfortable chairs, an uneven floor, and a co-ed rest room that can be a real surprise. Still, the restaurant is always packed, any day and any time of day or evening with people waiting for one of the 'under a dozen' tables for two, or one of the 'two' booths for parties of four or more, or one of the half-dozen bar stools. The food is cooked right there in the dining area, and the shelves are stocked with Cuban coffee, pasta, olive oil, and religious candles. There are Barbie doll legs only, hanging from the lights and a picture of The Last Supper on the wall behind the bar. This isn't to make light of The Last Supper, its just the opposite; religion is very dear to most of the Cuban community. The clientele is a big mix, students from VCU (an arts related university) with purple and green hair, rings in their nose, belly button or wherever else they can pierce; neighborhood families with babies in tow and dogs waiting for them at the door; as well as people dressed in business clothing, suits and high-healed shoes. Watching and listening to such a mixture is more entertaining than the chefs dancing as they cook.
I drove Sally down Monument Avenue where 'Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson' face off, and through much of the Fan District. The leaves were colorful and the autumn sun was shining bright casting longer shadows on everything; it was beautiful. A lovely day.
Today we will celebrate Dariana's third birthday along with her friends from school and a few family members. I'm sure I'll have pictures for you tomorrow. I've already given her a new dress for the party and papa has a package wrapped and ready to go. I'm looking forward to seeing how she interacts with her peers. Papa has been to some of her school functions but I've not been able to attend any so far. I'm anxious to see her in a social environment with other children her age. She can now say the 'Pledge of Allegiance', can you believe that, three years old!
Thursday, November 1, 2007
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
The Fall Felted Bag Exchange has ended and the hostess are asking for feed-back. They have ask a few questions and would like answers posted on our blogs. Below is my input to the survey.
How was your experience in the exchange? Did you enjoy the folks you met? Did you just love the bag you received? Please share any thoughts, criticism, and things you loved!
This was a terrific exchange and so was the Spring Exchange. This one seemed to flow smoothly from the beginning. Our hostesses spent their valuable time really working on partner matches and mine were great, both upstream and downstream. I've met two wonderful ladies and I like each of them. In this exchange I had the most correspondence with my partners that I've ever had before and I loved it. It was great.
The bag I received is so pretty (see photo a few post back); I love the style and the colors. Katie did a wonderful job of felting and shaping it and she inserted a hard bottom also. Nice, I couldn't have asked for better.
My downstream partner, Claudia, nominated me for 'Best Spoiler' could I ask for more? I'm looking forward to the next round.
Sunday, October 28, 2007
The new book, Bag Styles by by Pam Allen and Ann Budd put out by Interweave Press which I really wanted and wanted to join in the knit-along. There are a number of people already knitting their bags and displaying them on the blog, http://bagstylekal.blogspot.com/ , have a look.
Also in the box was a couple of balls of Plymouth Baby Alpaca Brush in a gorgeous red colorway and some yummy smelling lavender soap. That wasn't all; also included was a Halloween greeting card as well as a box of snacks for Mr. Maestro and a stuffed pumpkin for sweet Dariana. Thank you SP for a wonderful boxful of goodies, it's a perfect spoiling package. I love everything and so does Dariana and Maestro.
The program at our guild meeting yesterday was 'Knitting and the Internet' . While it was rather elementary to me, many of the members, especially those who have never worked, found it to be really interesting and helpful. I was surprised to learn that most of the ladies didn't have any idea of what a blog is and many don't know how to do a search for a particular topic. I don't believe anyone had an inkling of the knit exchanges and swaps that are available to the 'knitting world' and only one or two knew about knit-alongs. I had taken my bag and socks from Katie (Fall Felted Bag Exchange) for show and tell so there was a lot of interest in the idea of swaps and exchanges. We have some very talented ladies in our guild with much more expertise than I will ever have. Several showed their items for ribbons won at the state fair this month. There is always lot to see and learn at our monthly meetings. Check our web-page out here: http://rivercityknitters.com/index.html .
Friday, October 26, 2007
My entralac shawl is almost finished at last. I am on the last skein of yarn I think. I have two skeins left but have to make fringe and I usually buy an extra skein, just in case. I'm pleased with the way it is turning out and it has been a fun project to do. Once you get into the pattern I find it very relaxing but I do have to stop and think on each side triangle to be able to pick up the stitches from the right rectangle selvage to
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Friday, October 19, 2007
I don't have time to blog and add photos today but I will be returning in the next day or two to share with everyone what I mean about warmth and brightness. I returned home yesterday bringing my sister with me, to find two wonderful packages from 'Pals' of my knitting world. Both were delightful and so welcome. Both are wonderful and I can't wait to share them with everyone. THANK You SP-11, Thelma and FFB, Katie. You ARE The BEST!
Stay tuned for whats coming.
Monday, October 1, 2007
- My SP-11 downstream partner has received her package according to the post receipt but she hasn't let me know and she hasn't posted about receiving it. I'll wait and see what happens before sending out anything more. Perhaps I completely missed on her 'likes and dislikes', if so I'd like to know so that I can swing in a different direction next time, I'd really like to please. I haven't heard from my upstream partner other than a couple of post on this blog but I'm sure she must be out there someplace.
- Received my Christmas Around the World assignment and after viewing her blog I think I will like her; she seems to be an interesting person. I have sent an e-mail to contact her. Likewise, I had an e-mail from my upstream partner and have sent a reply to let her know that I'm looking forward to meeting Santa's cousin.
- The Bag-A-Holic group over on Yahoo decided to have a bag exchange for its members that were interested. I received my partner's info and sent her an e-mail but haven't heard anything in response. I am partnered with my partner for this exchange; should I think that she isn't interested after all and I will be left hanging, or should I think, that she thinks, I automatically know she is participating and that it's not necessary to contact me?
On to other things.
Papa Rō and I took beautiful granddaughter to the Children's Museum on Sat. DD had taken a fall on Friday night and hurt her knee. It is bandaged and she is on crutches waiting for the swelling to go down enough to see what damage has taken place. Hopefully it isn't serious.
DH made me a couple of new plant beds while I was visiting my sister last week and I spent Thursday planting it. It was so nice to dig in a loose soil. The soil in our area is so compacted and the most awful clay of any I've ever tried to dig in (and I'm originally from Georgia known for its red clay). DH got a load of compost from his friend and worked that in with the pond soil we purchased earlier this year and added a bit of lime and phosphorus. Now if it would rain I'd be set and so would the plants. I planted a gorgeous bright blue salvia, Black and Blue Sage and put in some digitalis, a perennial Fox Glove and added a few geraniums that I'd moved from our previous home. We also dug and planted a few small shrubs I'd brought back and rooted from my family in GA when I visited them earlier this year. Finally, we are getting a bit of gardening work done other than for the iris.
Tonight is 'knit night' at my friend Patti's home and I'd like to go since I'll be away for the next couple of weeks. Our LYS has changed ownership and there is a bit of a ruff taking place because last week, only one person showed up on Tuesday night to knit and no one placed a courtesy call to say they wasn't coming. Now the new owner isn't sure she wants to keep the store open late if no one is going to let her know they can't make it. Does this make sense from a customer's point of view? Either you will have 'knit night' or you won't have 'knit night'. Probably those of us that are considered 'the regulars' will start our own 'knit night' and rotate between our homes. That may be more pleasing anyway leaving one free to use whatever yarn and patterns they choose rather than being tied to the shops inventory. Most of us love supporting the shop but sometimes you enjoy knitting with something other than their inventory.
Thursday, September 27, 2007
I'd like to say the crisp, cool weather but we're having hot, sweltering days right now.
But--- the moon is one of my favorite things in the Autumn. Last night the Harvest Moon was spectacular, almost a full moon (which occurred on Wednesday night), bright, almost red, and through the sheers on my bedroom window it appeared to have a plus sign, as large as the moon itself through it, and a circle around the plus sign. Oh my, it was beautiful. Harvest Moon is the full Moon occurring nearest to the Equinox in the Autumn and is said to be the time for gathering corn, pumpkins, squash, beans, and wild rice, all staples of the Indians. The next full moon should be just as showy, October 26th and is the Hunters Moon indicating time for the Fall Hunting Season to begin and gathering of food for Thanksgiving. How simple that makes life sound, if only it was true today.
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
I got home from my visits late yesterday, exhausted and cranky - poor hubby, but this morning I'm feeling better. I have so many things to do and things I need to check on today but my plans are to mostly rest.
I have gotten a package off to my secret pal and one to my sister and her husband so for the rest of this week I need to concentrate on the fall felted bag exchange, that is lagging a bit. Actually I thought I was going to knit the biggest part of last week and that the bag would be in the mail by now. Instead of knitting as I'd expected to do, I helped my sister throw away a lifetime of 'pack ratting' trying to leave only enough 'things' that could be packed easily for her move north, close to her daughter. I'm so glad I was there and could help her but now I have to catch up on things that got put off.
The only yarn shop I managed to get to while I was away was Yarns To Dye For located in Flat Rock near Hendersonville, and for some reason (perhaps exhaustion) there really wasn't anything in stock that really caught my eye. I did buy a couple of balls of Filatura Di Crosa's Giardino in black and white that I thought would make a pretty scarf, and so did my sister. It was a bit expensive, $11.25 for 71 yards but it is 100% cotton and should be something that can be enjoyed year around. The shop's owner suggested it be knitted on size 13 needles, we'll see how that works out. While we were in the mountains we bought fresh apples at Sky Top and stopped at the farmers market and bought fresh green, purple, red, orange and yellow peppers, fresh SC grown peaches and a jug of peach cider, some okra, fresh cream peas and fresh crowder peas, SC Plantation wild rice, hot fried pork rinds, and toasted cracked corn, and two fried peach pies. YUM - it's all Southern!
DH seems to have neglected some of the potted plants that I wasn't able to get into the ground before I left. These were plants I bought during the plant sale a couple of weeks ago at the botanical gardens. I watered them deeply when I got home yesterday, but one in particular may be beyond saving at this point. DH watered but the draught we're in drinks the water before it can hit the plant's roots and a deeper watering is needed this late in the season. DH attended the local iris society meeting on Sat. and reported that the iris sale from two weeks ago netted the club about $2,200; enough to run a non-profit club on for the next year. All our hard work of digging, dividing, washing, labeling, trimming, and hauling has paid off again this year.
I hear those SC peaches calling me. Lunch can be peaches, apples, and a pork rind.
Monday, September 17, 2007
I've spent some time thinking today about which knitting projects I want to take along. The sister I'm going to visit has a much harder time ignoring fibers and colors than I do. She is a certified seamstress with McCall's and she dabbles in all kinds of needlework, just as I do. We can, and do, talk on the subject for hours.
The niece that I'm picking up to go with me is 9 months older than I. We went to school together, double dated together, and had lots of wonderful overnights when we were teens. She loves to shop so I should be able to fit a few yarn shops in on the way down and back up; I-85 has a world of shopping opportunities on it.
Anyway, I will be away for several days but then I'll be back and I'll have lots to talk about. I still haven't talked about our busy week and preparation of the bearded iris rhizomes we donated for the plant sale at the botanical gardens last weekend. I always say that spring is our most busy season but I sometimes wonder if it really is; fall is running me ragged this year.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Saturday, September 15, 2007
1. Are you religious? I don't go to church or participate in an organized religion any longer. I feel each person has to find their own peace (which I have) and live life according to their personal beliefs, not those of someone else. I also believe the 10 Commands are a good source to frame one's life around (my personal beliefe).
2. How long have you been knitting? Would you consider yourself a Beginner, Intermediate or Advanced? I've been knitting forever it seems but not on a non-stop basis until about the last four or five years. I consider myself to be an intermediate knitter, maybe a bit better.
3. Do you have any other hobbies besides knitting? Lots, I love to bake and cook, love to garden, and I do a bit of all kinds of needlework except for tatting. I have a collection of Waterford Crystal and I love good cookbooks and knitting books and, I do a lot of reading. I love all of Pearl Bucks works and Daphne Du Maurier's, too. More modern authors that I enjoy are Anne Rivers Siddons (I'm a sourhern girl), Amy Tan, Lisa See, and Rosamunde Pilcher.
4. Favorite color(s)? I truly don't know, I just love color. The jewel tones are wonderful, reds, purples, greens, blues, but I also love browns, grays, navy, and black.
5. Do you collect anything? I collect Waterford crystal, my pattern is Curraghmore.
6. Are you allergic to any fibers or animals? No, not allergic but don't enjoy receiving items covered in dog or cat hair (which has happened a few times).
7. Do you have any pets? Yes, an eleven year old Lhasa Apso named Maestro; one of the loves of my life. Lhasa's do not shed hair.
8. Coffee, Tea, or Hot Chocolate? Coffee, but not flavors - just good coffee like Blue Mountain from Jamaica or Duncan Donuts, I don't like Starbucks.
9. Cookies or Sweets? I love good homemade cookies while they are still warm or candy full of nuts. I don't buy many American brand name cookies anymore; they've had all the 'good stuff' taken out of them.
10. Do you knit socks? No but I will get around to it someday just to be able to say I have knit them.
11. If not socks then what? (tell us about your favorite knits) I love felting and knit both hats and bags. I also love shawls which I wear and I like knitting sweaters but not necessarily the finishing process.
12. Do you put up a Christmas tree? If not then what do you do? I've always had some type of tree and often times several. One year when I was having lots of houseguest for Christmas, I even put them in the bathrooms. Generally though, I only have one and they have gotten smaller as I've gotten older. Now with a granddaughter I expect that is going to change.
13. Favorite holiday treats? Toasted nuts, fresh coconut cake, white chocolate, nut, and cranberry shortcake cookies, peanut brittle, Carmel corn; all homemade and fresh.
14. Favorite holiday smells? Evergreens and cinnamon.
15. Do you celebrate Christmas in a traditional or unconventional way? Please elaborate. For our family we have 'our' tradition which starts shortly after Thanksgiving with baking cookies and making candy. I try to always arrange a time when my son is home for the weekend and he, my daughter, and me all bake together; what fun we have and we get most of our baking done in a day. On Christmas Eve we have our traditional dinner, fondue. We make big pots of cheese with imported cheeses and have pots of hot oil for cooking shrimp, chicken, and steak. We make several sauces for dipping and add a good French bread for dipping in the cheese. We have a special white wine that we use in the cheese fondue and buy plenty to go with our meal. This is one meal where we sit around the table for a couple of hours enjoying the family on a special night. Once everyone has eaten the last bite they can possibly put in their stomachs, we go to the living room and share our gifts. Santa doesn't come until Christmas morning and he fills everyone's stocking, child, doggies, adult, and guest and he leaves the children toys and the adults presents under the tree. We get up early to see what Santa has brought then later have a huge breakfast of country fried ham, red-eyed gravy, and biscuits along with grits or hash browned potatoes, eggs, extra sharp Vermont cheese, and homemade jams. Normally that is about the end of Christmas at our house but last year it changed a bit. I wanted something special because I was in the middle of my chemo treatments, really sick and wanted something special for the family. My son took over my kitchen and cooked a special Christmas dinner for us. We had a standing rib roast (he cooked it perfectly) with butter roasted new potatoes, bundled green beans, and a fresh wild green salad. Yum… This was so enjoyable that we plan to do it again this year. Whereas all this use to take place at 'home' we now go to my daughters for Christmas Eve dinner and opening gifts. We all spend the night so that we can see our granddaughter when she wakes on Christmas morning and we have breakfast before we leave. It's wonderful, all of it.
16. What are your favorite holiday traditions? The most important is having our family together. Then giving each child an ornament on Thanksgiving night, our baking together, and the Christmas Eve Fondue party. There is also the special night when my husband and I gather all the gifts we have and wrap them. We have a fire and open a bottle of wine and wrap until we are exhausted.
17. Finish the sentence: “For me Christmas is all about loving one another”
18. If you were a Christmas ornament you would be? A Santa because that's what catches the children's eye?
19. What was your favorite gift you've ever received? Or given? Gosh, I really don't know if you mean material things. I always say to my children that I don't want anything (and actually mean it) except for us all to be together and love one another. Of course they never listen to me and I don't practice what I preach when it comes to giving to them.
20. When do you start your Christmas? We bake early, usually the first or second weekend in December depending on how the weeks fall in a particular year. Our tree usually goes up two weekends before Christmas. Gift buying starts earlier each year because as we get older it takes us longer to do those things and we can't enjoy the crowds like we did when we were younger.
21. Do you send Christmas cards? Do you make them or buy them? We send lots of Christmas cards because we have a large family and lots of friends that we want to share greetings with. I always buy the cards; I'd never get them made if I had to make that many.
22. What is your favorite Christmas dish? Oh, there are too many to name but some foods that always come to mind when I think of Christmas are my mother's fresh ambrosia with fresh coconut in it and her fresh coconut cake. My dad always cracked the coconuts after removing the juice through the coconut's eyes, then peeled and grated it. He also cracked all the pecans we used at our house during the holiday season and we used lots.
23. Carolers are at your door. What do you do? Smile with joy, listen to them sing then offer them whatever Christmas goodies we have in the house.
24. When do you open presents? Christmas eve or Christmas morning? The actual gift opening is on Christmas eve but Santa always leaves a couple of gifts to be opened on Christmas morning.
25. Do you celebrate with family or friends or both? Always family and usually friends too.
Friday, September 14, 2007
NO KNITTING has taken place in the last week and am I ever behind. I'm hoping I'll be able to knit the weekend away while I am resting up then, I'm off on another round of my life. Tell you about that next time.
Thursday, September 6, 2007
Tonight we are attending a wedding reception for our longtime friend's daughter. The family is originally from Pakistan and we've been friends since shortly after their arrival in the US back in the 80's. The wedding was held week before last in Jamaica, then the honeymoon, and now we friends are joining them and their families for a Pakistani reception. I know from past experiences of attending Pakistani functions with our friends, this will be a treat to attend. We've joined one another for celebrating holidays both American and Pakistani over the years and its always been enjoyable for our family as well as theirs. How wonderful it is to be friends with this family.
DH and I are about to start our fall digging for the bearded iris rhizome sale to be held at the Botanical Gardens next weekend. It's lots of work but we enjoy it and we'll enjoy being at the Botanical Gardens for the sale along with a few hundred other plant vendors and a zillion people coming to buy. The sale starts on Thursday afternoon for members of the Botanical Gardens and is then open to the public on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I have to leave my $$ at home, there will be too much to tempt me otherwise.
We are almost through the first week of September so I've begin thinking about a gift to send my pal in SP-11. Today I will put it together and have it ready to mail when I decide on a day. I don't like to wait until the last minute to do my exchange s. I don't want my partners to feel they have been forgotten by waiting until the last minute to think about what I plan to do and then being late to follow through. If I sign up for an exchanges the least I can do is, 'do it right'. I've never send things that are laying around, or things that have already been used and shows it, or bags that have been knit so long and left in a shop window that the outside has faded a half-dozen shades lighter than the inside of the bag and is splotchy on the outsides. I recently received such a package and I'm still so hurt that this could happen to anyone, not just me. And, it wasn't as if this person couldn't have done better, she certainly knows how to knit well (she has patterns published), certainly had access to yarn and other knitting products (she owns a knitting shop), and certainly had the time, (at least the same amount that everyone else participating had). My point is I want to be kind to the person I am treating and send them the kinds of things that I would be happy to receive, not just something to put in a box. Generally I have been well treated and my partners are a treasure to me, especially those who still keep in touch. The purpose of these exchanges is to make new friends who have an interest in knitting and/or crochet. The gift part is to 'make your new friend feel special'.
I've been in the yarn stash again looking and changing my mind over the colors, or the yarn, I want to use for the Fall Felted Bag I should get started on. I'm spending too much time doing this when there are so many other projects on the needles or waiting to go on the needles. This week I've even though it might be nice to have a knitting machine to help out. I've never used one and don't know enough about them to know if I would want to use one. Is there anyone out there that can share your experience with me about "yes I love my knitting machine" and what kind it is, or "no, I hated my knitting machine" and why? I can share an e-mail address with you if you'd like me to.
Time for me to get busy with thoughts of what to wear tonight. I've not worn any of dressy clothing since before my chemo-treatments and most no longer fit. I've lived in pants, jeans, and shorts for over a year now, waiting, waiting, waiting to see whats around the corner. I don't want to buy new clothes yet and since I no longer work I'll continue wearing pants, jeans, and shorts most of the time. Still, one can't go to a party dressed this way so I must get up and pull something out of the closet that can be put with something else and come up with a suitable wardrobe for the evening. I bet I can.
- ► 2008 (26)
- ▼ December (5)
- I'm Blocking Entrelac Stole Today
- Felted Bowl, Bag, and Hats
- Pal's Knitting Going To Post Tomorrow
- Knitting, Iris and Hoakies Football
- Busy Knitting and Thinking About the Holidays
- Now I'm Knitting a Nicky Epstein Bag
- Knitting Two-Toned Triangle Bag
- Knitting Missing At Christmas Craft Show
- Knitted Red Hat
- ► October (7)
- ► September (10)