13 October 2017

Furball Friday

We have two of these igloos, where the cats like to be when the weather is cool.  (You can see part of one to the right in this photo.)  However, when you are Jack, and you just LOVE Pip, it apparently means that you really *need* to try and be right where he is.

Happy Friday the 13th!  Please kiss any black kitties in your families for me.

And have a good weekend!

12 October 2017

Three Stupid Things

Yes, I know - there are WAY MORE than three stupid things in the world - oy!  But as it's Three on Thursday with Carole and Kat, and I was in the mood to write a post, but didn't know what to write about, here are three things that just this morning are stupid.

1.  This sweater and others like it.

Look - it's either a sweater with sleeves or it's a tank top with no sleeves.  This is one of the worst examples of this trend I have ever come across, and if I saw someone wearing this, I would be tempted to trip them walking down the street.

2.  The story about the actress Rose McGowan's Twitter account being suspended.   I barely know who she is, except that I know she is one of the people who spoke out about that dirtbag Harvey Weinstein.  Apparently something she tweeted "violates the rules of Twitter."  Frankly, I can't imagine what that might be, as a certain party who is an alleged leader of our country seems to do a lot of insulting, bashing, accusatory, and otherwise inappropriate things on Twitter multiple times in one day, without consequences.  I mean, he's threatened nuclear war!   This is just another example of why people who have been victims of physical and/or emotional assault don't speak up. 

3.  OMG this commercial, which I saw this a.m. before I left for work, during a break from the local news.

NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO x a bazillion!!!  It is currently October 12; Halloween hasn't happened yet, and Thanksgiving comes after that, and THERE ARE RULES PEOPLE.  (Granted, they are my rules but they make complete sense and should be imposed on everyone.)  You may say, well, they threw in the pumpkin flavored pancakes, but no no no no that doesn't mean it's OK.  When you show "holiday" stuff with a tree, red and green decorations, and the "Nutcracker" playing in the background, you are not talking about Halloween and/or Thanksgiving.  Retailers start putting up displays early because they are selling THINGS.  Denny's is selling FOOD, and that's a whole 'nother ballgame if you ask me. (And you didn't, but also know that my rules specifically state no Christmas decorations until Thanksgiving is over.  I completely ignore them anywhere until then.)  Even if they wanted to pop this up around Thanksgiving, I could live with it.  BUT THERE ARE NEARLY THREE WEEKS LEFT BEFORE IT'S HALLOWEEN!  Granted, I don't know the last time I visited a Denny's (there are none near me), but that's not the point.

Stabbiness ensues.

I'm glad to have gotten those things off my chest.  Feel free to return to your regularly scheduled day.

09 October 2017

Long Weekend Day Off

Oh it's so nice to be at home on a Monday because it's a holiday, and you are not using leave time, nor will you get grief from your co-workers when you go back to work on Tuesday!

Yes, today is my third day of the Columbus Day holiday weekend.  And yes, I'm well aware of all of the reasons why Columbus Day is evil, so please do not lecture me about it.  The bottom line for me is that it's a day off.  I'm never gonna say no to that.

Lots of knitting and knitting-related things happened on Saturday and Sunday, as well as of course other things.  It would have been really nice if the weather had cooperated, but the heat and humidity stuck around (and are still here today) and that was the annoying part.  We are getting rain leftover from Hurricane Nate, and I don't mind that, but it's just so uncomfortable.  Yuck.

Anyway, on Saturday I went to a friend's house because she had kindly offered to help me put my Custom Fit sweater together.  You may remember that I managed to successfully seam the shoulders, but even after watching many YouTube videos, could not understand the rest of how to seam the other pieces together.  Kathy (said friend) is a major sweater knitter, and I knew she would be a great person to help me. 

Well it turned out to be not just helpful, but a wonderful afternoon.  I got to meet her kitties, her pup, and we had a great time talking and laughing.  Best of all, I got one of the sleeves added to the sweater and now I "get" it - yay!  I'm going to finish up as much as I can today.  She had a set of these clips, and boy did it make things simpler!  I'd never seen them before, but you can bet I'm ordering a set for myself.  Kindly, she let me borrow hers to finish up my seaming.  She showed me a fairisle vest she is making for her trip to Fair Isle next July!  It's going to be a really gorgeous knit, and the trip she is taking sounds ridiculously amazing.  Included besides all the knitting and fiber stuff is tea and cakes every afternoon and wine with dinner - how could it NOT be perfect?!

So hopefully very soon I can show you an actual, seamed, finished sweater.  :-)

Also on  Saturday, I had put ingredients into the crockpot for dinner.  It was a recipe I had made up in my brain, and was really wanting to try.  It was something I thought would be really yummy for a cool, fall day.  I got tired of waiting for that, so went ahead and tried it.  It turned out to be so incredibly yummy!  I'm going to try and write up the basics of it so I can make it again when [someday] it is cool again.  If you are wondering, it was Potato-Mushroom-Sausage soup, and unlike many of the recipes I make up in my head it's a keeper.

Saturday was a very successful day.

Sunday was just as nice, if quieter.  Not a day to really be outside, as it rained on and off all day, but a good day for knitting.  I have been somewhat obsessively working on this:

Above is the bottom border of the Main Street pattern, which, as you may recall, was hard to get cast on because there were so many stitches and I kept having to start over.  Well, a week ago yesterday, I finally got things cast on properly, and with the help of many stitch markers, I finally got started.  I gotta tell you, once underway, this was pretty addictive and easy to memorize.  In this photo, I'm a little more than halfway through the bottom border, but as of last night, I finished it, so it's on to stockinette for a while.  When I started knitting this, I thought that I should have waited since it's really other than a cold weather knit.  But now I'm thinking it would be fine for this weather ...

We spent the rest of Sunday reading, I also did more knitting, and we had the football game on in the background.  After The Tim made dinner, we watched some shows we'd recorded last week.  So it was a quiet and pleasant Sunday.

Today I hope to seam at least a bit more of my sweater, clean up a couple of things around here, read a bit, and if I have the energy and/or desire, cast on some socks.  It's still rainy at the moment, so it's nice to not have to be out in it.

On the one hand, I'm glad it will be a short week as far as number of workdays go.  But this coming Friday night is Members' Night at work, which means I'll get to work at my usual 7 a.m., but not be able to make my way home until sometime after 9 p.m.!  So it will likely still seem like a long week.  Which means I want to make the most of today, that's for sure!

06 October 2017

Old Photo Friday

Well this is a killer from wayback!

This is a photo of my mother, probably taken by my father.  I don't remember specifics, but I do know he had a Polaroid camera, and was always taking pictures of everything and everyone.  I do remember that my mother was all excited about her new swimsuit, so she was likely showing all of us how nice it looked.  And then Toby the dog decided he should also be in the picture.  The look of annoyance on my mother's face is perfect, and a look we all saw quite often!  I'm 99% sure that a comment like "Oh for God's sake! Why is the damn dog in the picture?" was also part of this event.

June 1968.  Wow, what a time. 

Have a great weekend!

05 October 2017

Three Things to Knit

Hello sports fans!  I hope you are having a good week so far.  I'm plodding through the best I can for the at-work part, and trying my best to enjoy evenings with The Tim and the kitties.  On Monday, we celebrated a year since Jack the kitten joined the family - that went fast!  And technically, I know he is not a kitten anymore since he has turned a year old, but he still looks and acts like a kitten, and for now at least, he's the baby of the family.  :-)  It also helps that today is Thursday, and the coming weekend is a long weekend for me.  Yes, where I work we get the day off for The Day That Should Not Be Celebrated Or Named Out Loud Around Most People These Days (i.e., Columbus Day).  I am shallow enough that a day off is a day off, and I'll take it. 

In any event, being that today is Thursday, it means that it is Three Things Thursday with Carole and Kat.  So I am participating this week because I do enjoy little lists, and have made one for this week. 

Today I am sharing three things in my Ravelry queue that my brain has been obsessing about lately.  Which is not to say that they will or will not happen soon, or even ever, but for the moment they are right there in the front.

Zadie, by Mercedes Tarasovich

I came across this pattern when it was mentioned on The Grocery Girls podcast.  They were knitting it as part of their Craftsy series, Off Our Needles, and seeing both of the ones they made just made me happy.  Cables are one of my most favorite things in the world, and the cable detail on this sweater just really appeals to me.  Also the fact that for one of them, it was her first sweater and she said it was so enjoyable to knit.  The pattern currently has 155 projects listed.

The Parlor Cat, by Sara Elizabeth Kellner

I've had this pattern in my queue for a long time.  Recently, I saw a blog post where someone (I don't remember who, sorry!) showed two that she had made as FOs and they were so adorable, I started thinking of this pattern again.  I've made one very small "stuffie" in my knitting career, and enjoyed it, so maybe I would also enjoy making this, who knows?  As of today, 574 projects are listed - apparently I'm not even close to being the only one who likes this pattern!

Great Falls, by Pam Allen

The other day I was watching/listening to a podcast (again, I don't remember which one ... I really need to make note of these things), and they mentioned this pattern.  So I took a look on Ravelry, and OMG I need this sweater!  It looks sooooo cozy, and since it's knit with bulky yarn, it would be a quick knit (well, theoretically at least).  I *may* even have yarn to knit this in my stash, but I purposely have not checked because I am trying to stay focused on current projects. The pattern sample is knit with Quince & Co. yarn, which is soooo pretty!  It's a new-ish pattern release, but there are already 42 projects listed!

What about you?  Do you have any patterns that have pushed to the front of your brain, or even to your queue?  When that happens, do you actually knit them, or like me, are you often distracted by another shiny (well, yarny) thing?

01 October 2017

Hooray! An FO!!

Hello and Happy October!  I love this month for so many reasons, and the weather has cooperated here in Philadelphia this weekend by being sunny, cool, and crisp.  Sleeping under a cover, pulling on a sweater over my t-shirt in the evening - it's all good.

And to start things off, I have an FO for you today.  I finished these a couple of weeks ago, but had wait to get a decent photo to show them off.

Project:  Summertime Solar Socks
Pattern:  Solar (a free pattern on Ravelry)
Yarn:  Yarn Ink Classic Sock, colorway Beach Life
Needles:  US 1.5
Modifications:  I made the legs slightly longer than the pattern instructed
Notes:  This is a whole lot of YES for me.  I loved the pattern, I loved the yarn, and knitting these socks were truly enjoyable.  The pattern is easily memorized and not as complicated as you might think when you first begin.  I had never used any yarn from Yarn Ink before, and this yarn was not just pretty to look at, but so pleasant to knit with.  It was smooth, and not splitty at all.  I could completely understand anyone who wanted to build a sock stash of this yarn alone!

I now have 9 pairs of socks in my Box o' Socks for this year!  For me, that is an amazing feat, and I'm thrilled I've been able to do this.  Next, I'll be making my October socks.  I'm gonna use this yarn:

These socks will be my entry for Dee and Vera's I ♥ Fall KAL.  I've narrowed it down to two possible patterns.  You'll just have to stay tuned to see which one I choose ...

Here's hoping it's a good week ahead for all of us.  ;-)

28 September 2017

Three Weird Things

Carole and Kat have left Think Write Thursday behind for Three on Thursday - every week, write about three things.  No other requirements.  You realize that this is A LIST, right?  And Lists R Me.  So today I shall share Three Weird Things About Me.  (I can hear you saying, "Only 3?" hahahahaha)

Weird Thing One

My belly button is fake.  No I am not an alien.  Back when I had a mastectomy, I also had breast reconstruction, using the TRAM flap method.  (Now I'll bet you wish you hadn't read THAT.)  Anyway, my plastic surgeon created a fake belly button so that I would look normal.  (Yeah, I know.)  So when I asked him where my original belly button went, he said it was somewhere in my upper chest.  Which caused me to ask him if when I got a cold and coughed, my reconstructed breast would move on its own.  Which caused him to nearly pass out laughing.

Weird Thing Two

I did not graduate from high school, but I have a Master's degree.  At the beginning of my senior year, I got pneumonia, and missed the first six weeks of school.  Even though I only needed two more credits to graduate (one more for state requirements), I was told that I couldn't return, and would have to wait until the next fall to do my senior year.  At this point, I had already been admitted to college at two places.  I contacted each of them, and they said no big deal.  So I worked and saved money the rest of the school year and started college the next fall.  Not being someone into the high school experience, I was not upset to miss things like the prom and such.

Weird Thing Three

I have won four different sound-alike contests for the "Mr Ed" theme song.  As you know, "Mr Ed" is my fave show EVER.  I know all of the words to the theme song, and at the end where Mr Ed sings the last line,  I have won four sound-alike contests for that.  Two of them were against people who others swore I would not be able to defeat.  Pffft.

How's that for a list??

26 September 2017

Casting On

I have been knitting for a lot of years.  Not a lifetime, but probably about 20 years.  (Which I know is a lifetime for some. Keep it to yourself.)  I'm not a great knitter, I'm not a fast knitter, but I have learned a lot, and I'm certainly better at it than I was when I started.  Overall, I'm pretty pleased with my ability.

So can someone tell me WHY casting on for a new project is so ridiculously hard for me to get right the first time? Or even the first *fifteen* times???  It doesn't matter what the project is, or how many stitches need to be cast on, or what kind of cast on method, or needle(s) I'm using - I just cannot get it right on the first try.

Take for example, a pair of plain socks.  I've made a ton of them over the years, probably more than any other knitted item.  I could probably knit a plain pair in my sleep (not well, mind you, but I could probably do it).  But before I even get to the knitting, I have to cast on multiple times!  Either the count is off, I've wonked it up, I don't have enough yarn to finish, etc.  Some say - put a marker every 5 stitches ... and then, I look at what I have, and there's a marker every four stitches ... or every six ... or - well you get the drift.

Over the weekend, I finished the pair of socks I'd been knitting.  So I decided to cast on (at last) for Main Street, which I'd been wanting to do for about a month.  The pattern says to cast on 228 stitches for a size Medium.

Someone - please just KILL ME NOW.

Over the past couple of days, I have cast on at least 4 times, and each time there has been a problem that required starting over.  I'm sure by now I've cast on over 1000 stitches total, and I have nothing to show for it.  Well, that's not true.  This morning before I left for work, I *think* I successfully got the right number of stitches.  But I made myself put it away so I can re-count them later.  My work life has enough aggravation without arriving to work already annoyed!

So tonight I will count the stitches.  And then I will force The Tim to double-check my count.  Should it be correct, I will knit the first two rounds of the pattern, Row 1 being all purl, and Row 2 being all knit.  I'll wait before continuing after that, because guess what - a simple lace pattern follows!

In between, I'll cast on for my next project, which will be a pair of socks for the I [heart] Fall knit along.  Well, I'll start casting on ...

Tell me - am I the only knitter who has this problem?  Surely there is someone else ... right?  RIGHT?

22 September 2017

Five Favorites for this Fall Friday

Well, OK technically Fall doesn't begin for another couple of hours, but - details, details.

What a week.  I mean, WHAT. A. WEEK.

I really really really had to think to come up with five things that made me happy in the last week.  But I found them, and here they are.

1.  Vegetarian sloppy joes.  The Tim made some the other day for dinner, and they were sooooo yummy!  And it's kinda funny, because when I used to eat meat, I wasn't really that crazy about sloppy joes, because the ones I had always seemed kind of greasy.  But these were most excellent.

2.  Talking to a friend I haven't seen for a while for a nice long time.  Last weekend, I had a phone conversation for a bit more than an hour with a friend who I haven't really had a chance to talk to for any length of time for about 4 years.  We e-mail back and forth, but nothing too involved.  It was fun and so nice to talk to someone who "gets" things that no one else does.  And that's a lot coming from me - someone who HATES to talk on the phone for the most part!

3.  Taking a colleague out for a belated birthday lunch.  One of the scientists who works where I do had his birthday at the beginning of September.  Every year at my birthday time, I inform him that he is taking me out to lunch.  To his credit, he always does.  So I took him out for lunch yesterday, and we had a good time.

4.  Weird but amusing dreams.  I've had a few dreams this week that were even stranger than usual, but what I could remember from them was really funny.  I woke up laughing twice, because somehow even as the dream was occurring, I knew it was ridiculous.

5.  The show "Difficult People."  I know it's not everyone's cup of tea, but we watched the episode for this week last night, and there was a particular part of it that made me laugh so hard, I could barely breathe.  Even The Tim was gasping.  So stupid and so funny.

I hope you've found some good things this week.  Everyone needs to find at least one, right?

We do not have any specific or elaborate plans for this weekend.  The weather is going to be stupidly hot and humid, so I sincerely doubt there will be any activities that require spending any amount of time outdoors.  Does that mean I have to clean the house???!!!

Have a good one.  Happy First Day of Fall!  And if you are lucky enough to be enjoying fall-like weather, enjoy some for me too.  :-)

20 September 2017

The Good, the Bad

Hello there - I meant to write a post in the past couple of days, but got waylaid by some other stuff that needed more immediate attention.  But things have settled at least for the moment, so let's discuss some good things and some bad things, shall we?

Good things first!  On Saturday of this past weekend, I bound off the Scattered Wishes shawl!  Here it is in a state of unblocked, unwoven ended-ness:

Sunday morning I wove in the ends, and blocked it later in the day.  Stay tuned for an upcoming FO post about this one.  Here it is, folded up waiting for blocking:

It's not perfect on the lace border, but it's just fine as far as I'm concerned.  I fudged a couple of things but it's not that noticeable, and even if it is, you have to be mighty close and looking at each stitch to tell.  My plan to only do two rows of the lace whenever I sat down to work on it was the answer to my problems with the lace.  I'm waiting for a nice day when I can get a really good picture for a project post on it.

Another good thing over the weekend:

Sticky buns!  A bakery near our house has these on weekend mornings, and every once in a great while we treat ourselves to one.  These were nice and warm from the bakery, and soooooo yummy!  We are suckers for good sticky buns, let me tell you.

So the weekend was successful.  I am also not that far from finishing the pair of socks I'm knitting - I'm at the decreases for the heel gusset, and then will be able to sail along on the foot and toe, and another pair will be in the books!  Then I can start on my project for Dee and Vera's Fall KAL.  I need to finalize what I want to knit, but it's narrowed down to three possibilities, so I'll just need to decide what works best with the yarn I want to use.

That's all good.  :-)

Then there's the Bad.  Sigh.  Earthquakes and hurricanes.  With not even a breather in between!  This morning on the news, the death toll from yesterday's earthquake in Mexico City was already in the hundreds, with a lot more searching to be done.  I've never experienced an earthquake of any note (gratefully!), but I can only imagine the fear and horror.  

There are wildfires in the west, some barely being controlled, that are destroying forests, lands, homes, and habitat.  Some areas have been suffering from drought and so fighting the flames becomes even  more difficult and unmanageable.

And then, Hurricane Maria heading right for my beloved Puerto Rico makes me incredibly sad.  I keep thinking of the horses, chickens, iguanas, and other animals on Palomino Island.  My hope is that they were able to move the horses somewhere else that is safer, but I also realize they do not have a ton of resources to work with, and will concentrate on people first.

Places right on the water will be especially hard hit, and likely destroyed.

And I keep wondering how people will survive and rebuild.  I know they will want to, since it's their home and their lives, but they are having so many financial issues to start with, there isn't a lot of anything else to use for a jumping off point.  

It's overwhelming when there is just one terrible thing happening - but there have been two earthquakes in Mexico in only a few weeks, and then Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and now Maria all in a row.  And OK, technically, Hurricane Jose has been riling up the waters and flooding along the East Coast, which is not good, but at least it's not as destructive as the others are/have been.  

We can only do so much to help, but it's better than nothing.  And we don't even have the example of compassionate leadership for direction and comfort to make us feel like can and do and will help.  Instead we are stuck with someone who wouldn't know what compassion and empathy were if they were standing in front of him personified.  It boggles my mind that people can exist who are like that, but we have our very own shining star in that arena.

Ugh.  It's up to the rest of us to do what we can, however we can, and when we can.  We're the ones who need to act and do a Good Thing.

13 September 2017

Extremely Ravell'd

Ha ha, see what I did there?  (Hey work with me people, I need to amuse myself however I can these days.)

Anyway, it's Unraveled Wednesday, and this week I actually have some stuff to share, so I thought I'd go ahead and post.  Sometimes there is nothing different to show you than the same old thing from last week, so I'm often uninspired.  But this week I felt like progress had been made.

Below are the two projects I am currently knitting.  On the left is the cuff and almost all of the leg on my second Solar sock.  It's an enjoyable knit, and once you get into the rhythm of it, you can make a lot of progress quickly.  It's when you haven't picked it up for a while that you find yourself knitting along and then you realize you've screwed up and have to unknit a few rows.  Then you become annoyed with yourself.  

On the right is a bunched up shot of my Scattered Wishes shawl, which is no nearly finished, that it makes me nuts.  Why, you ask?  Because the last 26 rows are lace, and as you know if you have read this blog more than twice, lace and I have a complicated relationship at best.  Having said that, I am currently at Row #20, which is farther along than I've gotten before, so perhaps the end is in sight.  Even using lifelines, I have frogged and restarted this section more times than I can remember!  I LOVE LOVE LOVE this project, and even hope to knit another one, but this last section is killing me!  I am determined to be the victor in this battle though.  ;-)

Lately I have not been able to read anything very complex or involved, so I recently finished two quick cozy mysteries, and started this the other day.  Edna O'Brien is one of my favorite writers, and this is a collection of short stories, which is perfect for me right now.  I just started this, but the couple of things I've read so far, I've really enjoyed.  I love her way of seeing things and describing people.

In other news, I went to a trunk show at Loop last Sunday for Backyard Fiberworks, and I have found another true love yarn brand (yeah, because I needed something else to spend my non-existent funds on, right??).  The colors she had were truly gorgeous - lovely combinations, and solids that were so saturated, they almost didn't look real!

She had three samples knit in her yarns that I was insanely crazy about:  5190 Miles, On the Spice Market, and Torquata, which Alice - the dyer behind Backyard Fiberworks - was wearing.  These are all lovely as shown on the pages linked here, but seeing them in person, in the combinations she had, made me actually want to knit them!  For the last two, she had sets of minis for the pops of color, and then you just add one skein of yarn for the main color, as she said, "Just from your stash, unless you want to spend more money!"  She was wearing her version of Torquata, and I think that may be an upcoming project for me, once I can save up to buy one of the mini-packets (they weren't that expensive, but I am currently very broke! ... and, since Loop will be starting to carry her stuff, I won't have to pay shipping).  Anyway, it is always fun to see yarns that are new to me, and to see how a different color combination can change your whole experience of something.

That's it for today's blathering.  I'm happy and relieved to see/hear that so many of my blog friends in Florida are safe, even if slightly inconvenienced by Irma - inconvenience is always preferable to injury.  One friend IRL who moved to Florida last year, said that her 3-year-old thought sleeping in a closet was so much fun, he didn't want to go back to his regular bed - he wanted to know if they could have another "raining party" soon!  I guess it's good he wasn't traumatized, but I'm pretty sure no one is hoping for another raining party anytime in the near future ...

Take care, all.  I'll be back  again soon.

08 September 2017

Five Favorites for This Friday

Even more than usual, TGIF!! (By the way, have you seen Kym's new way to interpret that?  I may have to give that a try myself in the future.) 

Thanks for all of your kind and supportive words over the past few weeks.  This week has been particularly brutal, and so I need a favorites post to keep me from just losing it altogether.  So let's see what we have to think about that has been good over the past week.

1.  The weather.  The actual weather outside - not in my head!  It's been a lovely week here in Philadelphia.  Tuesday was the least enjoyable to me, since it was warmer and more humid than it has been recently.  But other than that, the days have been sunny, warm but not too warm, with  nice breezes and overnight temperatures that require a sheet or lightweight quilt to be comfy.  Particularly given what other places are dealing with, it's been perfect.

2.  Our trip to Nockamixon State Park on Labor Day.  It was such a nice day, and though there were lots of people around, it was not crowded in the least.  We saw and petted lots of pups, laughed at some of the kiddos at the pool, and enjoyed watching the birds of prey flying around.  We saw hawks, buzzards, and even some brown eagles.  Even better, none of them were interested in us!

3.  Kim's Knitters Hunk and Knitters Chick contest.  It's just gotten underway, and if you haven't been participating, you should.  Not only is it fun to see who is nominated and vote, but I find it fascinating to see who is involved.  So many people nominate their faves that you truly see a crazy range of people.  

4.  Kindness.  Seeing how people have been going out of their way to actually do what they can for others with all of the hurricanes, wildfires, flooding, and even earthquakes happening.  So much of our daily lives has been overtaken by the horrific actions of the current administration in DC, that it was rewarding to be reminded that most people, when given the opportunity, have true kindness in their hearts.  

5.  Farm stands.  On our way home  this past Monday, we stopped at a farm stand and bought some fresh corn, a cantaloupe and some peaches.   We are still enjoying all of them, and they really and truly are so much yummier than what you can buy at a grocery store.  

Hopefully there has been at least one thing this week that has made you happy.  And here is wishing all of us a good weekend!  For those of you anywhere near any of the terrible weather, I hope that you and yours will be OK. 

Take care, everyone.

07 September 2017

Shortest To-Do List Ever!

This week's Think Write Thursday had a different kind of twist to it, since apparently participation is not what Carole and Kat were hoping.  I understand that, since I am not always a participant.  Sometimes I seriously just don't want to put the time and effort into a topic that doesn't grab me, and other times I truly forget altogether.  So they asked us this week to think about Three Things Thursday, and share three things from our To-Do List.

As you probably know I love lists, and I have To-Do Lists that are a) very long, b) unrealistic, and c) lists of To-Do Lists *for* my other To-Do Lists!  (Ridiculous, I know.  So.Many.Lists.  Oh well.)  But I can certainly share three things that are in the top of my brain (and its own list) right now, so here goes.

1. Find another job.  This has been on the top of many lists for a long while, but recent events have made it even more necessary for me.  The real kicker was yesterday, when I asked if someone could please empty the trash in the library, since our usual person is on vacation this week, and nothing had been picked up since last Thursday.  The solution: *I* am now collecting the library's trash.  I am not too good to do this, or a snob who thinks that people who collect trash are somehow not worth thinking about.  Rather, I am angry that this is the solution they came up with.  The powers-that-be decided outsourcing the building maintenance would be a great idea, so there are very specific things that the cleaning service will and will not do.  I could go on, but suffice it to say that apparently adding someone else's duties to another employee when someone is out is not part of the contract.  Which is stupid.  Anyhoo, I am very hopeful that something happens sooner rather than later on the job front for me.  Because especially very soon, it will only get worse for a long while before it gets any better.

OK, sorry for the mini-rant.  Moving on.

2.  Clean out one closet.  Yes, all of the closets need to be cleaned out, but you know, baby steps.  Surely I can get one out of the way.  Theoretically, it will help remind me not to just throw stuff into closets willy-nilly, and cut down on the need to do it again whenever it becomes Another Big Thing.

3.  Finish - or just even get closer to finishing - seaming a sweater.  My Custom Fit sweater was finished and blocked months ago.  A couple of weeks ago, I seamed the shoulders.  That's it.  If I would actually finish seaming it, then I could knit the neckline, and then I could actually WEAR it.  And the weather is only going to get cooler in the next couple of months, so I don't have the well-it's-not-like-I-could-wear-it-in-this-weather-anyway excuse.

To some extent, the first item is out of my control - but the other two could actually - hopefully - happen.  Yay.  :-) And I could do them this weekend ... or, I could do this:

I won't.  But ... I could ... and it would greatly amuse me ...

06 September 2017

In Which I Am Feeling Unstable

Hello there!  I hope all of you in the U.S. had a good Labor Day weekend.  Ours was for the most part uneventful, but the highlights were my successful crockpot dinner of minestrone on Saturday, and our trip to Nockamixon State Park for the day on Monday.  Most of the weekend was rainy, but Monday was one of those perfect days, and we had a great time hiking around, and then ending the day at the pool.

On Saturday, I finished the first of my pair of socks using the Solar pattern.  It took me a while, with my arthritis flareup, but I'm really pleased with how the first one turned out.  Here you will see one of my assistants checking for mistakes ...

I have yet to cast on the second sock, mostly because my arthritis is acting up again due to too much knitting over the weekend.  No one's fault but my own.

Rest assured, the other assistants also were busy.

I am currently having one of those weeks/times when you are fine, nothing much is going on, but you are unable to really concentrate on much of anything for any length of time.  I started a book, and I know I'm gonna like it, but I put it aside until I *must* read.  Right now my reading consists of looking at magazines and being able to handle the short articles.  My knitting is currently non-existent, between the discomfort and my lack of interest/concentration.  I'm trying to just ride it all out, but I'm feeling really out of it, and am with it enough to have it be annoying!

I did manage to revisit my Scattered Wishes shawl over the weekend, and make progress on the lace border past where I had to rip out and start over, so that was a good feeling.  (Until I realized that I'd done myself no favors by doing that much knitting.  Sometimes it's like I'll never learn.  Eejit.)  It's looking nice, but I didn't take any photos because at this point the stitches are so shmushed onto the needle, you can't really tell quite what it is supposed to be.  :-)

Summer Book Bingo 2017 ended and I didn't even have a single bingo.  Such is life.  I enjoyed it for the most part, but I'm not sure I'll do it again, at least not at this point.  I'm glad I branched out in some of my reading, but I guess the whole thing just didn't "click" for me.  Which is fine - some things I glom onto, and others, not so much.

This coming weekend is the New Jersey Sheep and Fiber Festival.  We went a couple of years ago, and it was a lot of  fun.  It's quite small, but perfect for spending a good portion of a day.  I'm not sure if we'll be able to go this weekend or not, but if you are nearby, it's worth a visit.  And yesterday I found out about the existence of the Lehigh Valley Fiber Festival; I was not aware of this event before, so maybe we can check that out.  It would not be that far from us, and at that point in September would probably be a lovely drive.

And that's it for now.  What are you up to?  Any fiber events coming your way anytime soon?

31 August 2017

Goodbye August, Hello September

Try to remember the kind of September
When life was slow, and oh so mellow.
Try to remember the kind of September
When grass was green and grain was yellow.

--  partial lyrics, "Try to Remember," written by
Harvey Schmidt and Tom Jones

Today's Think Write Thursday topic is "Hello September."  

Hello, September (on the last day of August) - as usual, I'm glad to see you.  But you also make me feel somewhat introspective when you show up every year.  I guess you never really stop thinking of September as a start, no matter how long you've been out of school.

September means (at least meteorologically) that summer is over.  I'm OK with that, since summer is not a fave of mine.  I do have to say that this summer was not as terrible as some of the previous have been.  The heat and humidity was not constant, so functioning and breathing was much simpler than it usually is.

However, at the beginning of summer we still had our sweet Jetsam, and now we don't.  Last summer I felt the same way about losing Dug the Doodle Dog.  But, time to start this September in a new way.

I like the way the light changes in September.  Even on my desk at work, there is suddenly a little sliver of sunlight on the corner that does not appear throughout the summer months.  

The trees start thinking about what is to come, and how to change their behavior.

Afternoon light dims a bit sooner.

And we are reminded that fall is on its way, by crisp mornings, fall sunsets, and new routines.

In September, I take stock of things for myself.  (I don't necessarily take any immediate action, I just take stock ...)

I do a lot of remembering.  People. places, experiences.  

I  know September means that we are in the last parts of any given year - perhaps some lost opportunities, but new possibilities too.

And always - a new notebook.  Some things never change.

(photos are from our September trip in 2016 to Acadia National Park in Maine)

27 August 2017

Sunday Night

Ugh  Back to work tomorrow after a week of vacation that even though it wasn't perfect, was still better than being at work.  I'm already telling myself that at least next weekend is a long weekend for Labor Day.  I hate wishing the week away like that, and am trying not to do it other than related to work.

Thank you for all of your kind words and concern after my last post.  To make a very long story short, I had been lucky enough to have two interviews for a new job at a place I think I would enjoy working.  I had not been assuming the job would be mine, but I felt I'd done pretty well at the interviews, and more importantly, it gave me hope that I could leave where I am, which is becoming more and more toxic every day.  So even though I hated going to work, I had hope.  Well, last Tuesday I got an e-mail from the HR person at the other place, telling me they were not "going further with your candidacy."  That's bad enough, but it was also the very first thing I saw on Tuesday morning, which didn't help.  Jobs of any kind are few and very far between around here, and it was the first call I've had for an interview in 2+ years of looking.  To say it was upsetting is putting it mildly.

I worked really hard last week to not let it ruin my whole week, and to concentrate on the good as much as possible.  For the most part, I was successful.  And as a dear friend said, try to focus on the small good things, and that you enjoy your life outside of work.  It doesn't solve anything, but it does help.  Those are wise words - I just hope I can keep them in mind.

So you see I am fine, and plugging away at other things.  Like my lemon meringue pie, which was a success - nice and tart but not too sour.  The last pieces will be for tonight (bad timing there!).  I am really thrilled with how well it turned out.

Our beach day was perfect - the temperatures were in the low 80s and there was no humidity to notice at all.  After we left the beach, we went and had a late lunch/early dinner at our fave clam shack, so that was a treat as well.  Sadly, it's the first time we made it to the shore this year.  Not that we usually go every weekend, but almost always it's more than just once by this time during the summer.

I've also been knitting of course, and I gotta tell you - I was really hoping the Scattered Wishes shawl would be finished by Labor Day weekend.  Not because it had to be, just because I thought that would be a good time for it to be finished.  I am on the lace border, which is 26 rows - 13 lace-patterned, and the other 13 just knitting back.  As you may recall, lace knitting and I do not have a solid relationship  And that lace border is kicking my butt!  Whether or not I've been using a lifeline, regardless of how slowly I go, it's just been a mess.  I am however, determined to "get" it.  I am back at Row 1 of the border, and will try my practice of *only* working on it first thing in the morning when I am freshest (and possibly only on weekends), and only do two rows at a time.  Every time I feel confident going past the second row I'm doing, I screw up.  I'm sure it's as much psychological as anything else, but I am determined to get it done!  Maybe just not by Labor Day ... ;-)

My socks are going well, and I've been reading a book I'm really enjoying.  This morning I spent about an hour and a half cleaning up in the garden.  Other than watering things, when it's really hot and humid, I just can't handle cleaning up.  But it looks pretty good right now  A few of the flowers we planted never made it, so I just pulled them up, but others are doing OK, and some are very happy!

This has also recently started:

Here is Pip, happily curled up and napping.  You can't necessarily tell from the photo, but he has decided that the small cubby under the table in our TV watching area, where I keep my laptop, is his new fave place to relax and hang out,  He barely fits, and it takes him a few minutes to get situated.  He's content to be there whether or not the laptop is.  Sigh.  He is a weird cat!  If any of the others attempted this, he would narc them out in a second, especially if they got on top of the laptop ...

The weather is still nice here, which is enjoyable not just during the day, but nice for sleeping at night.  I keep thinking of everyone having to deal with the hurricane and its after effects in the Houston area, and hope they get some relief sooner rather than later.  It looks as if a lot of people are checking in on their neighbors and trying to help one another, and I know that some Philadelphia firefighters left today for the area to do what they could.  When something like this happens, it really does take a village.

And that's all from here on a Sunday night.  I hope you had a good weekend, and that the week ahead will treat you well.  I'll be back soon with a giveaway to celebrate (belatedly) my blog anniversary, so stay tuned!

23 August 2017

Pie Day

Not to be confused with Pi  Day (March 14) ...

My mother was not much of a cook, though she loved to eat.  But once every summer, she would make a lemon meringue pie.  It was a *big* deal.  And always yummy.

The other day I stopped at the market near our house for a few things, and I saw that they had a box of Lemon Pie filling.  Hm, I thought - I have a pie crust in the freezer, and I'm home this week, maybe I'll make a lemon meringue pie.  So I bought it, and today turned out the be the day.

It doesn't look as nice as my mom's used to - she was really good at getting super high peaks on her meringue, and successfully spreading it so that no filling was visible.  But I think I did a pretty good job for my first attempt.  We'll have some later, and hopefully it will be good.  I already remembered one ingredient she would use that I forgot, but I'm hoping it will still be OK.  Lemon meringue pie always makes me think of summer.

This week has been OK, so far.   Monday afternoon we took Milo the Koodle to the vet for a checkup.  We've been so busy with Dug and then Jetsam the past couple of years, that it had been a while since any of the others had gone.  We were trying a new vet, and hoping for the best.  Milo was so freaked out, that when we put him in the carrier, he expressed his anal glands.  OH MY GOD THE SMELL!!!  Fortunately, the vet cleaned him up.  He got his shots, and was declared in good health.  Of course they made a huge fuss over him, which he loves.  And his report from the vet said he was "a good boy."  PUH-LEEZE.

Yesterday was just a terrible day. First thing in the morning I got awful news (nothing health-related, don't worry) and frankly it just ruined my whole day.  I couldn't stop crying.  I don't mean to be vague, but I just can't talk about it right now.  By the end of the day I was OK again, but it was one of those days that was so humid, it was unbearable. So unfortunately, it was a lost day.  

We had crazy loud and violent rainstorms overnight.  I was having trouble sleeping anyway, so I sat up watching most of the night.  Needless to say, I'm tired today!  But it was a day of doing stuff around the house, baking, cooking, and things like that.  The weather today was gorgeous, so we had a pleasant walk this afternoon, and will likely sit in the garden for a good part of the evening.

Tomorrow - a beach day!!  YAY!!

I've also been knitting away, and yesterday I finally swatched for my summer sweater top.  Ahem.

I finished one book today, and started another.  Though I have a few squares on my Book Bingo card filled, I'm not anywhere close to having a completely filled card like some other participants.  But I'm OK with that, because I wasn't thinking it was a contest, and I just wanted to see what I would be able to accomplish.  There's still a week or so left, so who knows, I may have more than I think by the time it's all over.

So it's been a week when I am more than happy to not be at work, especially yesterday.  Now the weather has improved, which helps everything anyway, so it's all good.  

How has your week been?

21 August 2017

An FO Post for Eclipse Monday

Hello everyone!  I hope you had a good weekend.  Ours was fantastic in Baltimore - though the last part of the trip driving there was blinding, torrential rain.  It could only go up from there, right?  Well, it definitely did!  And ... I took zero pics of anything.  Others took a few, so if we are FB friends you may have seen them.  But for a brief recap, it's mostly The Tim in his Mr. Bean t-shirt on our boat ride.  Good times!

I am quite pleased, because finally - between arthritis flareup, falling and banging one of my hands, and just general other stuff-ness - I have an FO to show you!  [cue applause and awe]


Project:  Bridget's Social Security Number Socks
Pattern:  I just use my go-to plain vanilla sock pattern for worsted weight yarn.  It's based on Classic Socks for the Family from Yankee Knitter Designs (Rav link)
Needles:  Size 5US
Yarns:  All of the yarns used at Plymouth Encore Worsted Weight yarn, left over from various and sundry projects over the years (trust me, I have plenty left!)
Modifications:  I striped the pattern, but otherwise nothing else
Notes:  These are QUICK.  Each one took only a few evenings or weekend afternoons to complete.  I made the gray one first and though I like it, decided it was too "serious."  So I decided to make socks that matched but didn't match, and changed around a couple of the colors.  I like they way they look and the fact that they are a quick project is quite satisfying.

These will go and live in my Box o' Socks until next year, when I can pull them out and wear them during the cold months in our house.  We have hardwood floors, so it can feel pretty chilly!

Since The Tim is on vacation this week, I decided to take time also.   We will be taking day trips and also doing stuff around the house/garden, taking The Koodle and Jack for vet appts, and other various things.  This afternoon, we're going to walk over to the Schuykill River Park, since Philadelphia is supposed to get an 80% effect of the eclipse.  It's a beautiful clear day, so we will be able to recognize that it's actually happening.  We have our eclipse glasses ready to go.  In a way, this works out to be our big activity for the day - our weekend was quite busy, so a day of more or less down time works well.

And that's that.  I hope this will be a good week for everyone.  Today would be my father's 101st birthday, which I just cannot imagine, and as you saw in my Friday post, it would be our Tess' birthday as well.  In another odd coincidence of life, The Tim's dad also had his birthday on August 21st!  How weird is that?  So happy birthday to three of the best!  We love you and miss you every single day.

18 August 2017

Furball Friday

This is our girl Tess, who died a few summers ago.  Her birthday is this coming Monday, and I've been thinking about her lately.  She was quite the character, as she never really settled down after being brought inside when we found her as a stray.  Even though she terrorized the other cats, she was really affectionate with us, and was one of the kissing-est cats I've ever known.  We miss her every day.

Enjoy your weekend.  As a matter of fact, enjoy it YOUR way - just like Tess always did!

16 August 2017

Knitting, Reading, Babying

Today is another Unraveled Wednesday, so it's time to show you what is going on with me as far as reading and knitting.  The "babying" part of this is my effort to not do too much knitting at all until my arthritis flareup has disappeared.  It's much better than it was, and if I can just knit a bit and then put it down for a while, it should be fine.   I just have to keep reminding myself so I don't get carried away!

Over the weekend, I started this book:

So far, I'm enjoying it.  There have been a couple of times when it's made me laugh out loud, and these days especially, that feels good.  I hope it will continue to be a good read - it aggravates me how so many books are good at the start and then suddenly it seems like the editor feel asleep.

During the past year or so, I've been usually only working on two knitting projects at a time, and that has been a good practice.  But currently I have three things going: my Scattered Wishes Shawl, my Social Security Number Socks, and these:

The Scattered Wishes Shawl does not look much different than the last time I showed it.  I got to the lace border, and was going along *very* slowly when I realized I'd made a huge mistake.  So I ripped back the 6 rows and will be starting over.  Not a big deal, but since it requires concentration, I just haven't picked it up in the past week after ripping out.  The lace also requires some needle maneuvers that I think are probably better done when my hand is in better physical condition, so it may be another week or so until I try again.

I finished the first one of my Social Security Number Socks, and have just finished knitting the gusset of the second one.  I switched around a couple of the colors, so they will match but not match once finished.  Which pleases me.

You saw the yarn above in last week's post, wound into a skein ready to knit.  This is the very beginning of the first sock of a pair.  I'm using the Solar pattern, which is easily memorized, and so far seems to be a happy match for this yarn.  Incidentally, the project bag is one of Mrs. Brown's Bags, but I got it as part of a combo from Yarn Ink - it was the July Bag + Yarn Club choice (and we nowhere near as expensive as the June choice on the website!).  I've always like the bags, and had hoped to get one, but the shipping was just too much for me.  This offer of the yarn and bag together was a better deal, and I'm glad I went for it.  The bag pattern is made from a print of this yarn knit up into a large stockinette swatch - how cool is that?

I'm making slow progress on each project, and haven't yet started the swatch I mentioned doing in the other yarn shown in last week's post.  Mainly because I hate making swatches for knitting in the round, but I'll get to it soon because I really do want to knit the item.  

On an unrelated note, we had a Customer Service workshop at work yesterday, and here is an actual exchange that happened at the beginning:

Instructor:  The most important thing to remember is that you should smile.
Attendee:  Are you saying this to men who are in these workshops as well?
Instructor:  Well, we are telling them to look approachable.
Attendee:  By smiling?
Instructor (big sigh): It's a well-known fact that people like to see women smiling, whereas it's fine for men to look approachable and serious.


And .... OK, I'll admit the "Attendee" was yours truly.   But ... but ... GRRRR.

13 August 2017

Random on Sunday

We are having a lovely day today.  The weather is nice (no humidity!), and the sky is bright blue with the puffiest clouds you could imagine.  We spent pleasant 1 1/2 hours at the pool (city pools close this coming Friday, we are trying to fit in as many visits as possible), where there were others around but it wasn't crazy busy (it probably is by now).  Came home, and I did some kitty cuddling while watching a podcast, and then after a few attempts, I successfully sewed together the shoulder seams on my long-finished-and-blocked-but-still-in-pieces Custom Fit sweater.  (Next up - sleeves!)  And now I am enjoying a glass of wine while sitting here writing this post.

Makes it seem like the world is nothing but perfect.  Of course it isn't and it never has been.  And this past week, especially yesterday's events in Charlottesville, Virginia prove that.  There is nothing I can say that hasn't already been said.  Suffice it to say that I am angry, heartsick, and depressed at what our country has become under someone who is so despicable, I can't even mention his name.  I am hoping, praying, and doing what I can to not just battle the feelings, but the ideas and the person.  We are better than this, and if we all step up, we'll be able to prove it.

Moving on to other topics, I have been trying really hard lately to pay more and better attention to what I eat and drink, and also trying to be more active.  I used to do a good job of all of that, without really thinking about it, but slipped back into bad habits.  I'm happy to report that in the past couple of weeks, I have been making real progress, and it's starting to feel like "normal" again instead of a huge effort.

Alas, I'm having another arthritis flareup, so my current knitting projects are languishing.  I know it's a waiting game until it all calms down, but it is frustrating nonetheless.  At least I can still read!

A retired curator at work who still comes in every day, gave me 5 tomatoes from his wife's garden, because he said they are being overwhelmed with tomatoes.  They are some of the juiciest, most tomato-ey tomatoes I've had this summer!  The Tim and I are hoping that he'll bring more.  He usually brings in goodies from his garden and offers them to us, and fortunately for me, I'm the only one who likes tomatoes!  (What is wrong with people???)

The other day on my way to work, I saw a woman walking an Old English Sheepdog.  He was the friendliest dog, and when I went to walk away, he tried to come with me.  The woman said that I was the first person who paid him any attention that morning on their walk.  (Again, what is wrong with people???)

My sister in  California called today, and was telling me that in the next few months, she is going to be really busy traveling.  My brother-in-law does workshops related to a specific part of business training, and goes all over the place doing them.  They have requested his workshop in Kuala Lumpur and Dubai, among other places, and Nancy is going along because she figures it will be a once-in-a-lifetime chance to go.  She said the flight from LA to Kuala Lumpur is 25 hours.  OK, that would be the down side ...

We are headed to Baltimore next weekend, and I am ridiculously excited about it.  I always look forward to going, and we always have the best time, but this time I am looking forward to it more than ever.  I think because we haven't really gone anywhere since Memorial Day, and that seems a long time ago.

Before then, however, I have my annual visit to the gynecologist tomorrow, and a haircut appt on Wednesday.  This week will be busier than any I've had for a while.  I'm not really looking forward to the first one, though I'm not dreading it either.  But ... well, you know.  Not something that is exactly "fun."  I am looking forward to getting my hair cut, since it's looking a bit shaggy.  It's just at the point where you start to think you might cut it yourself.  Fortunately, I have learned my lesson there.

Hopefully this will be a good week.  Let's do what we can to make it so!

09 August 2017

Halfway and Beginnings

Hello all - I hope your week has been going well.  Mine has been ... well, fine,  especially since we are again enjoying lovely summer weather, with low heat and no humidity.  Mornings are cool enough to wear a sweater while walking to work, which makes me happy.

Today I thought I'd join up again with Kat and others for Unraveled Wednesdays.  

Reading-wise, I started this at lunchtime the other day, and even though so far I've been only able to read during lunchtimes, I'm about halfway through (it's a short book).

So far, it's interesting - about life in modern-day Ireland during the recession when so many lost their financial safety nets.  Each chapter is told by a different character, and you learn how their stories are woven together while still being separate.

Moving on to knitting, I have one of my Social Security Number socks finished - I forgot how quickly worsted weight socks knit up!  I tried but could not get a decent photo, so you'll see them another day.  And I cast on the second sock, and think I might make some of the colors represent different numbers, so I can have socks that are the same but different.  Since they are to wear around the house, it will be fun to have a really odd pair. :-)

So those are underway, but I really wanted to work on some other things as well.  I've reached the lace border part of my Scattered Wishes shawl, which means only one or two rows at any given time, as even the simplest of lace patterns can be misinterpreted big time by me.  I'll get there, but I can't just sit and knit on that like I used to be able to do.

The answer: start another pair of socks and swatch for another project.

On the left, is the yarn for socks, from Yarn Ink, a new dyer (at least to me).  It's difficult to photograph, since it is very light, but trust me, it's AMAZINGLY PRETTY, with colors and speckles throughout.  The colorway is Beach Life, and so far I have a bit of a cuff knit, and oh do I love it!  

The yarn on the right is Quince and Co. Tern in the Dusk colorway.  Depending on the light, it looks lavender, or slightly gray, or purple-blue.  Even though it's August, I want to swatch for this pattern, and even if I can't wear it until next spring/summer, I'll have it, right?  

You may ask, why am I even thinking of knitting a garment, when I have - at best - a spotty history with garments?  Well, I just want to give it a try, and do it as properly as possible.  I *think* I have a much better understanding of swatching than I used to, after a class I took a couple of years ago at Loop.  Believe me, I'll keep you posted!

What are you reading and knitting these days?  Are you involved in any make-alongs in preparation for Rhinebeck?  I've noticed a few seem to be getting underway.  As you know, whenever I join a KAL or something similar, I seem to have a severe attack of knitter's block.  And since I'm not going to Rhinebeck (though I would certainly LOVE to someday!), I'm just going to enjoy seeing what others are making and enjoy their anticipation.  Vicarious knitting and travel can still be fun, you know?

04 August 2017

Old Photo Friday - Early August Edition

In one of Kathy's recent Q&As, she asked if we had a favorite summer photo.  I had stuff going on that week, and never got around to posting responses to that Q&A, but I immediately thought of the photo below.  I've posted it before, but it never ever ever ceases to amuse me.

I don't know what the initials on the caption stand for, but this was taken at the pool in Oglebay Park, which is a GORGEOUS municipal park and resort in my hometown of Wheeling, West Virginia, in 1938.  The woman on the far left who looks annoyed is .... you guessed it, my mom!  I love this picture because she looks so annoyed, while the others all look like they are enjoying being at the pool.  When I would ask her why she had this expression on her face, the answer was always some version of: "Oh for God's sake, how the hell do I know, it was a long time ago."  (Said in an *extremely* indignant tone.)

I think I love this photo because I find it so amusing, but also because it captures the essence of my mother - she loved to have a good time, but was easily annoyed.

Not that it is like anyone *I* can think of ... ;-)

Have a great weekend, even if others are annoying.

03 August 2017

So ... We Arrive at August

For today's Think Write Thursday, Carole and Kat provided the prompt "Hello, August."

So hello, August.  Like all other things, you arrive every year, regardless of whether or not I am ready, happy, or whatever.  And that is a good thing.  It means *I'm* still here to say, "Wow, it's already August."

Like all months, you have things I like and things I don't.  I used to dread you as a kid, since you meant school started again soon.  But I also liked you, because you were usually the month we went on vacation.

Right now, I guess you are OK.  I'm not happy about the fact that at least around here, you are still pretty hot and humid.  But I am happy that your arrival means that end of that is coming.  You are the month when the farmers' market has a lot that I look forward to seeing in abundance: tomatoes, corn, peaches, and early apples.  So I enjoy that about you, I think more than anything else.

I'm not pleased that I fell yesterday and really messed up my right hand/wrist and knee - nothing really drastic, just painful, uncomfortable, and not pretty.  At least I'm left-handed though, so I can still do most things pain-free.  And I know I didn't fall because it was August, so I'm not blaming you for that.  :-)

I did remember the #augustbreak2017, albeit a few days late, so that is definitely a good thing.  (Though I posted tomorrow's prompt today.  Sigh.)  I particpated last year, and enjoyed it quite a bit.  I like Instagram a lot, and it is fun to have the various prompts.  So thanks for that one!

I hope to spend most of your month trying to remember to live in the moment, enjoy my life, and be as happy as I can be.  So I think it will be OK, you know?

Having said that - if you wanted to cool down weather-wise, that would be great ...