21 March 2019

A Few Favorites

Happy Day After The First Day of Spring!  It's rainy and damp here in Philadelphia, which frankly is annoying because geez Louise has it rained a lot this year!  I like some rain here and there, and love a rainy day when I'm at home and can be extra cozy, but why has it rained so much, and not at all in other places???  It's just one of the many things that would change in a Bridget-centric world.

Seems like a lot of knitters/knit podcasters are traveling to Edinburgh for the Edinburgh Yarn Festival, which would be nice, because a) Scotland, and b) yarn.  But as life would have it, I will be only traveling this weekend to My Stash, as it is that time of year when I do a review/cleanout.  So my trip will be to a) Philadelphia and b) the third floor of my house.  The best thing is that I don't have to spend money or even talk to anyone, so I guess it's all good in the end.

Moving on.

Today is Three on Thursday, so I thought I would share a few of my favorite things in three different categories.  These are of course, just a few that come to mind, not a comprehensive list in any of the categories.

1.  Three of My Favorite Knitting Podcasts.  It's very likely you know all/some of these, but anyway, here you go.

     a.  Little Big Knits - This is a fave because Selma, the hostess, seems to be a lovely person who knits really beautiful things and shares them from her home in Ottawa.  She has a very calming effect, and also shares a lot about her family and her travels.  This year alone, she had an episode where she showed a lot of her trip to Finland to visit her family, and her most recent episode is filmed in Uruguay, where she is visiting her husband's family. I just like her and think she would be someone who would be a wonderful friend if you knew her in person.

     b.  Chevyrell - She may be the opposite of Selma (above), but I enjoy her podcast just as much.  She lives in the US midwest (Michigan, I think) and works at a funeral home.  She is hilarious, and goofy, and loves sharing her knitting and her life stories.  She is definitely not everyone's cup of tea (or in her case, a cocktail or beer), but she cracks me up.  Her stories about her life, her dogs, and what she is making and why are pretty much no-holds-barred.  I feel like if you met her in real life, you would recognize her right away, and be assured of a good time.

     c1.  Sweet Tea No Shade - Scott and John are a married couple in Indianapolis, and Scott is a more experienced knitter.  Their podcast is a lot of sharing about the things they knit, but also techniques and and patterns.  It's also funny when their cats make an appearance, usually by walking in front of the camera, much to their dismay.  They also have a good time laughing about Scott's mother, Betty Ann, who lives in the South and apparently always has a lot to say.

     c2. Janet Prue - Janet lives in Massachusetts with her husband and their two sons, and she is a really adventurous knitter, always trying new things.  Her podcast is currently very small, but she is friendly and welcoming, and it's fun to see what she knits.

**I know, I cheated with 4 instead of 3, so sue me.

2.  Three of My Favorite Things to Rant About.  Trust me, this is really a small sampling ...

     a.  Cell phones - Well, OK, not them in and of themselves, I do understand why they can be a good thing.  But I am really tired of how they are the center of existence for so many people.  It's nearly impossible to have a conversation anymore with someone face to face without them constantly checking their phones, or even worse, taking a call in the middle of a conversation, when the call is not about their house burning down or their children being kidnapped.

     b.  People Who Cannot Bear Cursing, but Use the F Word Several Times in Any Given Sentence - I know so many people who are such delicate flowers that they cannot bear to hear a curse word at all, and would DIE if their delicate spawn should be exposed to such.  Yet these same people use the F word more than they breathe, I think.  I do find it amusing that neither of my parents ever used the F word as far as I know, but they both did a lot of swearing.  I mean, all the time.  (Case in point:  When I was little, before I could make my own breakfast, the first thing I would hear every morning from my mother would be, "Well, what the h*** do you want to eat this morning?")  I swear/curse/whatever occasionally, and my sisters are the same.  I never use the F word, and actually find it tiresome, and I think my sisters are the same way.  And none of us are delicate, trust me.

     c.  Stupidity -  This one covers a lot.  As in, just about anything or anyone.  If people genuinely don't know/understand something, or have just not been exposed to things, then that's one thing - they can still learn and grow.  But overall, general stupidity just makes me stabby.

3.  Three Favorite Things I Like About Myself.

     a.  I love words and language and hope to never stop learning whatever I can.

     b.  I think I have a good sense of humor, albeit not one that others can always appreciate.  But

     c.  I am incredibly loyal if I feel you deserve my friendship/love/support.  I am willing to give everyone one chance at the benefit of the doubt, since no one is perfect.  But once I decide you are someone I respect, I am incredibly loyal and will not ever share your secrets, will always defend you, and will always be there if you need me.

Do you have favorites to share?  Let me know!

18 March 2019

Back to the Unfortunate Reality of My Reality

Ugh.  Today is back to work.  I have come to the conclusion that I don't mind working as much as I mind my crap job.  And my incredibly rude - and often just plain mean - co-workers.  It's bad enough on any given day, but after four days off, it's just insulting, you know??  :-)

Oh well, such is life.  Since I can't afford to retire, and I have no other prospects, it's time to suck it up and enjoy the other parts of my life as much as I can.  That's what I did for four wonderful days.

Last Thursday was my birthday, and in keeping with my personal tradition, since I had accrued some vacation, I took Thursday and Friday off.  I will admit that I am always surprised these days when I consciously think about how old I am.  This was my 63rd birthday, and of course that always comes after your 62nd birthday, right?  I guess part of it is that I have outlived my father by ten years at this point, and if I am lucky enough to live for a few more years, I will outlive my mother as well.   That just seems weird, but then again, I'm glad to still be here!

The Tim baked me a birthday cake, which looked really yummy.  He placed it on a table where I warned him that it could either a) be knocked onto the floor by the kitties, and/or b) be reachable and therefore eatable by Hamlet.  He responded in a way that made me sound like a crazy person, so I left the issue alone.  You can see where this is going, right?  Thursday afternoon at one point, I came into the living room and thought, hm, what's different?  Well, the cake was on the floor, and half-eaten by a very pleased doggie!  When The Tim got hom from work, he said, "Gee, I guess I should have put it someplace else."  YA THINK????  Anyway, we had birthday candles to blow out in some Rita's Water Ice, and another cake was baked the next day which was placed out of reach, and best of all, no sick dog!

Friday, I had an occupational therapy appt in the morning and then headed to the dentist to get my teeth cleaned.  Then Hamlet and I went for a long walk, since it was a lovely day.  Thursday was also perfect weather-wise, and I took a long walk with him in the morning, and then a really wonderful long walk myself in the afternoon.  I couldn't believe that it was so nice for two days in a row when I was actually home from work!  Usually the days I'm home are the ones with terrible weather. 

Saturday was also nice, but really really windy!  I walked over to Loop to get some double-pointed needles in the early afternoon.  Friday evening I had started to try and pick up stitches and start knitting the sleeves on my Neverender sweater.  After a few rounds, I frogged what I had knit and just decided that the needles I was using were making me miserable.  They were a really old pair that I'd had for years, from when I started knitting and there was not a lot of choice in different types of needles.  They had some kind of covering that almost felt like rubber, and it was making it truly difficult to move the stitches around.  Fortunately, Loop had a good variety, and I came home with a set of Knitter's Pride wood needles, which so far are working really well.

Yesterday was of course, St. Patrick's Day, so I went to church first thing (growing up we *always* went to church on St. Patrick's Day, and then if it was a school day, my parents would let us stay home).  Then I did a small amount (emphasis on "small amount") of cleaning, and then baked some Irish Soda Bread, which turned out really well.  For dinner we had a vegetarian shepherd's pie and some Guinness.  The only thing I didn't get to do yesterday was any knitting, but I still had a really enjoyable day with Hamlet and the kitties.

It felt good to do my own thing without being sick or having other problems for a change.  It would have been nice if The Tim could have taken a day off as well, but we had a good Saturday together, and enjoyed our evenings.  (For all I know, he might have been relieved to not have a day off with me, since he had quite a few over the last months, LOL.)

So, though I am not necessarily thrilled that it's Monday and that I have to be back at work, I'm glad to still be here for my 63rd year, to see what might happen going forward.  Here's hoping that it will be more enjoyable than the latter part of the year before!

Hope your week is off to a good start.

17 March 2019

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

May you have the hindsight to know where you've been,
the foresight to know where you are going,
and the insight to know when you have gone too far.

Have a lovely day and may St. Patrick send blessings your way!

13 March 2019

Reading, Ravelling (and Thankfully, No 'Rithmetic!)

First of all, thank you for your kind comments on my last post, and wishes to Milo for his birthday.  I read them all to him, and he was quite pleased, doing that slow blink thing that cats do when they are happy.  He got a catnip goldfish which was a big hit with everyone, and everyone had celebratory treats, so it was a good day all around.

Today is Unraveled Wednesday, and I'm joining Kat and the others to talk reading and knitting.

I recently finished A Week in Winter, by Maeve Binchy, which was a lovely, quiet book and just made me enjoy reading it.  Next up is this book:

The Tim recently finished this book, and recommended it to me.  Since we do not often read the same things, I thought it was worth giving a try, so today at lunchtime I'll get it started.  He mentioned that he had read that they are making a movie of it, and the plot sounded interesting, so he decided to see what he thought - his verdict is that it's "a page turner."  Well, we'll see.

It's been quite a while since I could share any significant knitting progress here, but over the weekend, I finished the body of my Neverender sweater.

Now if I can get the sleeves knit, soak and block it, I'll have an FO, which will be so rewarding.  Of course, I'm pretty sure that by the time I accomplish this, warm weather will have arrived ... oh well, it will be "new" then next year!  :-)

And that is what is happening around here.  After today, I have the next two days off, so I can read or knit or do whatever I want, which will be the best.

What are you up to this week?

11 March 2019

Lucky #7

Seven years ago today, a feral cat had a litter of kittens in South Philly.  The feral cat was lucky, because she was in the backyard of a friend of ours, who had created a shelter for feral cats and fed them.  Once the kittens were weaned, she was able to find homes for all but one kitten, as well as take the mom to be spayed.  We had recently adopted Dug the Doodle Dog, and I told The Tim that we should adopt the kitten because Dug needed a kitten.  After a few weeks of reminding him of this, and some agreement from the friend, that kitten (aka The Koodle) joined our family.

He was so little!

By the end of the same evening that he arrived in May of that year, he and Dug were inseparable, causing The Tim to say, "I guess Dug did need a kitten."

Of course, his real name is Milo, and he has been a real character for sure!  He and the other cats have always been friends, but when Hamlet joined the family last summer, you could tell it made him really happy.  They are such pals, even though Hamlet is still figuring out the whole cat thing in general.

He embodies the adage, "When he was good, he was very very good - but when he was bad, he was horrid."  

Happy 7th Birthday, Milo the Koodle! 

 We hope you'll be around to drive us insane for many more years.

08 March 2019

In the Mood Again for a TGIF post

Well.  Here we are, another Friday has arrived and March is underway.  I am now on a once-a-week schedule for my occupational therapy, and it's scheduled for Friday mornings at 7:30, which works really well for me.  It means that I get it all done first thing, and then even when I have to still go to work, it's the last day of the work week. 

Having said that, since I am not at work until later in the morning, I have more time that belongs only to my and my brain.  Here's what was rattling around in there earlier.

Thinking About - how undervalued it is anymore to be average and/or normal.  Everyone is obsessed with the Most Wonderful People.  But it's the average, normal people who get up every day and go to work and do the things they are supposed to do  (often providing support to the Most Wonderful People).  And most people do well enough in their schooling to advance through the levels of school.  But only the Amazing Smart People get the recognition.  They go to The Good Schools - which has always made me wonder: Are there parents and teenagers who - if not Amazing Smart People - say to themselves, Oh well, I guess I'll just go to A Bad School, or An OK But Not Really Good School? 

Getting Ready For - a big week coming up.  We have Milo the Koodle's birthday, my birthday, St. Patrick's Day, and then St. Joseph's Day which means zeppoles!!

Interested In - trying to find the best way for me to get myself and my life organized a bit more.  Most people who know me think I'm already incredibly organized, and I am by nature someone who likes to be that way, but since I broke my wrist and have been recovering so slowly, things have fallen by the wayside.  I've decided to try and figure out something this weekend, or at least get some ideas.

Funny - this falls into the category of it's funny but I do know it shouldn't be.  I saw a link to this article on Twitter, and not only does the headline amuse me greatly, but a) it's ironic it would appear on International Women's Day, and b) some of the Twitter comments were hilarious.  My inner 12-year-old boy was amused by the person who said that it proves that "money can't buy happenis." 

Have a good weekend, and be careful out there.  :-)

04 March 2019

Lazy Saturday Then Scrappy Sunday

Hm.  That weekend seemed about 3 hours long.  Sigh.  

But it was a good one, nonetheless.  First of all, it was the weekend.  Saturday when I woke up, I didn't really feel that great - sniffles, headache, joint aches, you get the picture.  So after I took Hamlet for his walk, I went back to bed for about 2 hours, which actually helped.  Then once I took my shower I felt even better.  I don't know if that indicated that a cold was on the way, or it it was just being tired, but fortunately it didn't seem to stick around the whole weekend.  

So Saturday consisted of a lot of just doing small things in between taking lots of breaks.  I finished a book I'd started on Friday (it was a quick, cozy mystery, so it went pretty quickly), watched a couple of knitting podcasts, and worked for a little bit on my Neverender sweater.  (Which is what most of you know as the Weekender pattern by Andrea Mowry.  I think I'll like the finished piece, but even before I broke my wrist, it seemed to take FOREVER to knit.  Anyway.)  The Tim had to work, so I just enjoyed an unexpected day to myself.

Sunday, I decided (for the second week in a row) that it would be Scrappy Sunday.  This is apparently a thing others know about, but I only became aware of it after watching one of the episodes of the Crazy Sock Lady.  She mentioned that on Sundays, she tries to work only on scrappy projects, so they get some regular attention.  I decided that was a really good idea, and I was going to give it a try.  So last Sunday I managed a square on my Cozy Squares of Memory Blanket (it's the one on the top right in the photo below).  Then yesterday, I completed the square shown in progress in the photo below, plus one more.

I enjoy this idea, since prior to this, I'd only added a square or two after I'd finished a project.  This way I can visit it more often, and feel like I've accomplished something, even if it's just a couple of squares.

Other than that, I tried a recipe that was a sort of fake spanakopita, and it was a) very easy, and b) really, really good!  So that will definitely stay in the group of things we have regularly. It's always nice to find a new thing to fix for dinner that doesn't take hours to assemble.  Then we watched some shows we'd recorded, and waited for the snowstorm which was supposed to be HUGE but at least in the city, just meant dampness and wet streets this a.m.  I know that they got a lot of actual snow in the burbs and other outer areas, but it was a bust for us.

So even though the weekend seemed to go by too quickly, it was a good one, and I got to do some knitting.  I'll take it.  :-)

01 March 2019

Let's Begin a New Month with Some Letters

The first day of March, which is one of my most favorite months of the year!  It's snowy and becoming slushier by the moment here in Philadelphia, but it's Friday, and it's the first of March, so as far as I'm concerned, it's all good.

Having said that, I have decided to start the month off with some Friday letters.


Dear Bryce Harper:

So you are now one of the Phillies.  Good for you.  I do think you have talent, but I gotta say, I'm not a fan on a personal level.  You strike me as grand example of a douchebag bro.  I doubth that - or you - will change, but at least I hope you help the Phillies win.  However, should you turn a team that seems to be a bunch of relatively nice sporting nerds into other douchebag bros, I'm the least of your worries, because other Philadelphia residents will straighten you out with no hesitation.  Welcome to Philadelphia - the City of Brotherly Love that is not in any way for the faint of heart.


Dear Bernie Sanders:

Jesus Christ on a snowmobile, WHY do you feel the need to run for president again?  Look, I agree with a lot of your concerns and ideas, but seriously, dude.  Just stop.


Dear Hamlet:

I love you beyond words, but I wish you could understand that when you are allowed on the bed for a few minutes in the morning before we get up to go for a walk, that it would be more fun for me if you didn't feel the need to park on top of my chest.  I enjoy being able to breathe, and 80 pounds of you makes it quite challenging.


Dear Knitting Podcasters:

Thank you for your company these past few months when I couldn't knit.  It was nice to have you around, particularly on the days I was stuck at home and didn't feel like reading.


And that's it for me.  Do you you have any letters you'd like to share??

Have a good weekend!